The following Dispute Resolution practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
ARCHIVED: This Practice Note has been archived and is not maintained. For the current position, see Practice Note: Default judgment—application or request—Effect of late filing of the acknowledgment of service or the defence.
A question that causes difficulties for practitioners and the judiciary is whether or not a default judgment can be entered in circumstances in which although the acknowledgment of service or the defence has been filed late, it is filed prior to the court determining the request/application for default judgment. There is currently no definitive answer although that position will change on 6 April 2020.
The interpretation of CPR 12.3 has now been clarified and the changes will come into force on 6 April 2020. The amendments to CPR 12.3 are set out in the Civil Procedure (Amendment) Rules 2020, SI 2020/82, r 3. The change means that where an acknowledgment of service or a defence is filed before a judgment in default is entered this will be a bar to the court making an order for default judgment.
Rule until 6 April 2020:
(1) The claimant may obtain judgment in default of an acknowledgment of service only if –(a) the defendant has not filed an acknowledgment of service or a defence to the claim (or any part of the claim); and(b) the relevant time for doing so has expired.(2) Judgment
(1) The claimant may obtain judgment in default of an acknowledgment of service only if –
(a) the defendant has not filed an acknowledgment of service or a defence to the claim (or any part of the claim); and
(b) the relevant time for doing so has expired.
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