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If you are being sued in small claim court you has 14 days to send response or ask time extension till 28 days for preparing defence.

What pack defendant get from the court in case of small claim:

  • Served claim form N1 and statement of the case(additional particulars of claim could arrive a few later)
  • form N1C - Notes for defendant where specified response's deadline, instruction how to reply on small claim and title of county court form that should be filed and served.

If claimant didn’t send a claim form or additional statements within 14 days defendant may serve a notice or discontinue the small claim.

Application by defendant for service of claim form


(1) Where a claim form has been issued against a defendant, but has not yet been served on him, the defendant may serve a notice on the claimant requiring him to serve the claim form or discontinue the claim within a period specified in the notice.

(2) The period specified in a notice served under paragraph (1) must be at least 14 days after service of the notice

Defendant specify the way of his defence in the Acknowledgement of Service where he either could ask more time to file defence (time extension till 28 days).

There are several options in regards of claim response:

  • If the claimed amount was paid before the small claim have been issued, person who got sued should sent copy of payment (it could be lower the claim amount as claim amount may be specified with interest) and form N9B. Defendant may send document online via MCOL.
  • Defendant could issue counterclaim to dispute whole amount and complete form N9B or N9D(for unspecified amount or non-money claim) and send it to the court or via MCOL. Even if claimant discontinues his claim, counterclaim wouldn’t stop. It is up to defendant to withdraw a counterclaim.
  • Defendant may dispute full or part amount of small claim and should reply by using form N9B within 14 or 28 days. In case of defending just part of claim defendant must complete 2 form: N9B and N9A. Defendant must notify about chosen defence and request extension of time by sending Acknowledgment of Service(form N9(CC)). 
  • Defendant could admit part of claim and offer to settle according Court Procedure Rules Part 36 sending properly done settlement letter with proposal. Claimant could request a clarification and defendant should reply within 7 days.
  • Admitting the claim and offer to pay amount of claim by completing small claim defence form N9A. Court re-send it to the claimant and ask to reply him within 14 days. In case of claimant fails to reply, small claim case would be stayed.  If claimant accepts amount, then he will ask the court to enter judgment. If the claimant doesn’t accept time of payment offered by defendant, then court decide the rate of payment.
  • Sending payment upon getting a small claim and complete Acknowledgment of Service and Admission defence form (N9A)
  • Fail to response and not to file defence could caused the claimant request the default judgment.

In case of defended small claim court send Notice of proposed allocation(form N149) to the both parties. Then defendant and claimant should file direction questionnaire to the court within 14 day. 

After that court will take a decision about allocation small claim hearing.

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