Q&As

What steps should be taken, and what effect does it have on the proceedings, where you become aware the defendant’s address has changed and/or was wrong?

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Produced in partnership with Tom Montagu-Smith QC of XXIV Old Buildings
Published on LexisPSL on 05/04/2017

The following Dispute Resolution Q&A produced in partnership with Tom Montagu-Smith QC of XXIV Old Buildings provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • What steps should be taken, and what effect does it have on the proceedings, where you become aware the defendant’s address has changed and/or was wrong?
  • Before issue
  • After issue, before service
  • After service
  • Later in proceedings

In answering this Q&A, we have assumed that the question is asked on behalf of the claimant.

Before issue

In general, the obligation is on the claimant to include in the claim form an address at which the defendant may be served (CPR 6.6(2)). Subject to various exceptions, the claim form must then be served in accordance with CPR 6.9.

Where the defendant is a company or limited liability partnership (LLP), it must be served at its actual address, being the appropriate place identified in items 4–7 of the table at CPR 6.9(2).

An individual defendant may be served at his usual or last known residence or (if he is sued in the name of a business or partnership) his usual or last known place of business (items 1–3 of the table at CPR 6.9(2)).

Where the claimant has reason to believe that an individual defendant no longer resides or carries on business at the usual or last known address, he is required to take reasonable steps to ascertain the defendant’s current address (CPR 6.9(3)). If those enquiries are successful, the actual address must be used (CPR 6.9(4)(a)). If those enquiries are unsuccessful, the claimant must consider whether service may be effected at some other place or in some other way (CPR 6.9(4)(b)). If it may, the claimant must make an application for alternative service under CPR 6.15 (CPR

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