Asking for more information
Sometimes a statement of claim will refer to things you are unsure about. It may:
- refer to dates, events or conversations that you don't recognise or remember
- refer to documents that you are not sure if you have seen or received
- have little or no details about the claim itself.
Without this information it may be hard for you to decide if you should agree or disagree with the claim.
You can ask for more information by sending:
Request for further and better particulars
You can write to the plaintiff to ask them for more information. This is known as 'a request for further and better particulars'.
You should set out your request for further and better particulars as a series of numbered questions. This will make it easier for the plaintiff to respond. The particulars given by the plaintiff will become part of their claim against you. Don't forget to keep a copy of your letter requesting more information.
Sample: Sample letter asking for further and better particulars after receiving a statement of claim.
If you decide to defend the claim it is important you file a defence within 28 days of receiving the statement of claim. If you don't, the plaintiff may apply for a default judgment against you.
You can ask the plaintiff for further and better particulars after you file your defence. You may then be able to amend your defence after you get answers to your request for further information. For more information, see Changing your defence.
If the plaintiff applies for a default judgment against you before responding to your request for more information, you can use your letter asking for further and better particulars to support an application to have the judgment set aside.
For more information, see Setting aside default judgment.
Notice to plead facts
If the plaintiff has not provided enough detail, in certain circumstances, you may be able to file a notice to plead facts with the court and serve (give) it to the plaintiff. You must do this within 28 days of being served with the statement of claim. Otherwise the plaintiff may be able to get a judgment against you.
Sample: Sample notice to plead facts
A plaintiff may decide to respond to the notice to plead facts by filing an amended statement of claim. A plaintiff has 28 days after receiving the notice to respond. You have 14 days after receiving an amended statement of claim to file a defence, if you have not filed one already.
If you are not sure whether you should file a notice to plead facts or a defence, you should get legal advice.