Litigation Brief – An Overview of CPR Part 10: Acknowledgment of Service

July 3, 2024

By: tme

Ai Law Legal Services

The Civil Procedure Rules (CPR) Part 10 deals specifically with the acknowledgment of service, a crucial step in the litigation process.

What is CPR Part 10?

CPR Part 10 sets out the procedures for acknowledging service of a claim form. This acknowledgment is a formal step that a defendant must take after being served with a claim form to notify the court and the claimant of their intention to contest the claim. Proper compliance with Part 10 is essential to prevent a default judgment being entered against the defendant.

Key Provisions of CPR Part 10

1. Purpose of Acknowledgment of Service (CPR 10.1)

The primary purpose of the acknowledgment of service is to:

  • Notify Intentions: Inform the court and the claimant whether the defendant intends to defend the claim, admit the claim, or challenge the court’s jurisdiction.
  • Extend Time for Defence: By filing an acknowledgment of service, the defendant extends the time to file a defence from 14 to 28 days after service of the claim form.

2. Filing an Acknowledgment of Service (CPR 10.3)

CPR 10.3 specifies the requirements for filing an acknowledgment of service:

  • Timeframe: The acknowledgment must be filed within 14 days after service of the claim form.
  • Method: It can be filed electronically via the court’s online system or by submitting a paper form to the court.

3. Contents of the Acknowledgment of Service (CPR 10.5)

The acknowledgment of service form must include:

  • Details of the Case: The claim number, parties’ names, and date of service.
  • Defendant’s Intentions: Whether the defendant intends to defend all or part of the claim, admit the claim, or contest the court’s jurisdiction.

4. Effect of Filing an Acknowledgment of Service (CPR 10.6)

Filing an acknowledgment of service has several effects:

  • Extended Time to File a Defence: The defendant now has 28 days from the date of service to file a defence.
  • Prevents Default Judgment: By acknowledging service, the defendant avoids the risk of a default judgment being entered for failing to respond to the claim form.

5. Failure to Acknowledge Service (CPR 10.7)

If the defendant fails to file an acknowledgment of service within the specified time:

  • Default Judgment: The claimant can apply for a default judgment, meaning the court may decide the case in the claimant’s favour without hearing the defendant’s side.

Importance of CPR Part 10

Preventing Default Judgments

One of the most crucial aspects of CPR Part 10 is that it helps prevent default judgments. By acknowledging service, defendants ensure they have the opportunity to present their case and avoid having a judgment entered against them by default.

Clear Communication

CPR Part 10 ensures clear communication between the defendant, the court, and the claimant. It provides a formal mechanism for defendants to notify their intentions and begin preparing their defence.

Time Management

The acknowledgment of service extends the time for filing a defence, giving defendants the necessary time to prepare their response and seek legal advice if needed.

Practical Implications for Defendants and Legal Professionals

Understanding and complying with CPR Part 10 is essential for defendants and their legal representatives. Properly acknowledging service is a critical step in defending a claim.

Tips for Compliance

  • Act Promptly: As soon as a claim form is received, take immediate action to file an acknowledgment of service.
  • Use Correct Forms: Ensure that the acknowledgment of service form is completed accurately and submitted through the correct channels.
  • Monitor Deadlines: Keep track of the 14-day deadline for acknowledging service and the extended 28-day deadline for filing a defence.
  • Seek Legal Advice: Consult with legal professionals to ensure that the acknowledgment of service and subsequent defence are properly prepared and filed.

CPR Part 10 is a vital component of the civil litigation process, providing clear guidelines for acknowledging service of a claim form.

Contact Ai Law today to learn more about how we can assist you in achieving your litigation goals through expert legal support and comprehensive case management.

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