LEGAL UPDATE: Unrepresented Defendant Loses Before Trial

Judith Thompson

A recent case heard by the Technology and Construction Court highlights the dangers of conducting litigation without proper legal advice.

A claim was brought for unpaid invoices. The defendant defended that claim, and mounted a counterclaim for professional negligence. The case was nearing trial and the claimant completed it's Pre Trial Review Questionnaire in accordance with the Court's directions. 

The claimant then applied for summary judgment and for the defendant's counterclaim to be struck out. At the hearing, the judge ordered:

  • The claimant obtained judgment on its three unpaid invoices; and 
  • The defendant's counterclaim was struck out, because
    • they had not instructed an expert, as the Court had ordered;
    • they had not set out their claim for professional negligence properly; and
    • they had not filed a properly completed Pre Trial Review Questionnaire

The defendant was given 14 days to put these issues right and to ask the Court for relief from sanctions, but was told that they had to pay the associated costs.

Litigation can be a minefield of complex orders and requirements, which have strict deadlines, that have to be complied with.

If you are struggling with your own litigation, contact us today to see how we can help. 

If you have a strong case, but you are worried about how much instructing a lawyer will cost, we will always consider one of our flexible funding arrangements with you, which could include conditional (no win no fee) arrangements.