Adding (joinder) and substituting parties

The following Dispute Resolution practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Adding (joinder) and substituting parties
  • Reasons for additions and substitutions under Part 19 of the CPR
  • When will the court add, remove or substitute a party before the end of a relevant limitation period?
  • Adding or substituting a claimant
  • Adding a party
  • What test will the court apply?
  • How will the court exercise its discretion to add a party?
  • Case management considerations
  • What happens if the new party does not wish to be joined?
  • Adding a party after judgment has been handed down
  • More...

Adding (joinder) and substituting parties

This Practice Note provides guidance on the interpretation and application of the relevant provisions of the CPR. Depending on the court in which your matter is proceeding, you may also need to be mindful of additional provisions—see further: Court specific guidance below.

Reasons for additions and substitutions under Part 19 of the CPR

CPR 19.1 provides that ‘any number of claimants or defendants may be joined as parties to a claim’.

A party may need to be added or substituted for a variety of reasons, including:

  1. a party is likely to be added if it is discovered that liability may be shared with another party

  2. a party is likely to be substituted where its liability has passed to another party and it is desirable to substitute the new party so that the court can resolve the dispute (CPR 19.2(4))

The court's permission is required to remove, add or substitute a party once the claim form has been served (CPR 19.4(1)).

An application for permission can be made by an existing party or a person who wishes to become a party (CPR 19.4(2)).

As a general rule, claimants are entitled to pursue which defendants they wish, and cannot be required to join defendants that they do not wish to sue (Smith v Michelmores Trust Corporation Ltd, applying Dollfuss Mieg v Bank of England). But this is subject

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