Default judgment—relief from sanctions when setting aside under CPR 13.3
Default judgment—relief from sanctions when setting aside under CPR 13.3

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

  • Default judgment—relief from sanctions when setting aside under CPR 13.3
  • Application of Denton relief from sanctions principles in default judgment cases
  • The Denton three stage test
  • Is the breach in question serious and significant?—first stage
  • Is there a good reason for the breach?—second stage
  • Considering all the circumstances (includes delay)—third stage
  • Illustrative cases of the application of the Denton principles
  • Litigants in person
  • Older cases

This Practice Note confirms that the relief from sanctions test set out in Denton v White applies when making an application to set aside a default judgment. The Practice Note sets out the test and considers each of the three stages and how they may be considered when dealing with an application to set aside a default judgment. It also considers the position when dealing with litigants in person.

This Practice Note needs to be considered in conjunction with Practice Notes:

  1. Default judgment—setting aside under CPR 13.3

  2. Default judgment—requirement to set aside promptly under CPR 13.3

For general guidance on making an application for relief from sanctions, see: Compliance and relief from sanctions—overview.

Application of Denton relief from sanctions principles in default judgment cases

Three Court of Appeal decisions in Regione Piemonte v Dexia Crediop Spa (2014), Michele Robinson v Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea (2016) and Gentry v Miller (2016), establish that the three-stage test in Denton v White is to be applied to applications to set aside default judgment under CPR 13.3:

  1. Regione Piemonte—this was the first Court of Appeal decision to hold that the three-stage test for determining relief from sanctions under CPR 3.9, as set out in Denton applied to applications to set aside default judgment. For insight, see News Analysis: Court of Appeal: setting aside default judgments, key considerations and the application

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