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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 44882
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I had a claim made against me and entered a defence within

Customer Question

I had a claim made against me and entered a defence within the time allocated. I then received a notice saying the claim was eligible to go through the small claims track which both parties agreed to. I subsequently received a General Form of Judgment or Order stating " the pleading defence does not raise a defence tot he clear contractual terms and is therefore Struck Out". After that I have now received a Judgment for Claimant (in default) stating "you have not replied to the claim form". Do I have any grounds to set aside the default judgment? I am an accountant and assumed it would go through the Small Claims Arbitration as we agreed and a compromise would be reached which would not affect my career.
Submitted: 25 days ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 25 days ago.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 25 days ago.

Please can you provide some more information on the nature of the claim.

Customer: replied 25 days ago.
The claim was for unpaid private school fees from 2010. I disputed the claim because they only allowed my daughter to attend for 10 days of the specified term due to arrears from the previous term. However, per the contract, if she attended even one day the terms fees were due. I no longer particularly dispute the legality of the claim, perhaps the fairness but that doesn't count. The original outstanding fee was for £3,370, with added interest and costs it is now £5,507 with 8% interest being added.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 25 days ago.

OK thank you, ***** ***** it with me. I am in court for the rest of today so will prepare my advice in a while and get back to you at the earliest opportunity. There is no need to wait here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Thank you.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 25 days ago.

just to check did you ever enter a formal defence?

Customer: replied 25 days ago.
I entered a formal defence through the MCOL service. I assumed this was what the General Form of Judgment or Order referred to when it stated " the pleading defence does not raise a defence to the clear contractual terms and is therefore Struck Out".
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 25 days ago.

Thank you. Arbitration is a voluntary exercise and it is not something which would automatically happen if you go to the small claims court. If the case was allocated to the small claims track you would still be expected to proceed as with a formal claim where you suit a defence and pursue the claim so arbitration will not be considered unless you both agree to it and consciously begin that process.

It appears here that you entered a defence but it was not appropriate in the circumstances as it did not address the issues raised in the claim. So that is why the claim was struck out.

If you were not given the opportunity to amend these you could try and appeal on these grounds but usually an appeal an only be made on points of law, if the court got the law wrong. This is a procedural issue rather than a point of law.

Saying that you can apply for the judgment to be set aside. You must do this within 14 days of the judgment has been served on you and you use form N244 to apply for this.

I hope this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars - this is an important part of our process and recognises the time I have spent assisting you. If you still need me to clarify anything else, please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you

Customer: replied 25 days ago.
On what grounds can I ask for the judgment to be set aside?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 25 days ago.

so you entered a defence but before it was struck out were you given an opportunity to fix it in the event it did not address the claim?

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