Default judgements


Civil court proceedings generally involve any matter that is not criminal.

For civil cases in England and Wales, the processes, rules and guidelines for litigation solicitors in the vast majority of civil court proceedings are contained within the Civil Procedure Rules (CPR), which were introduced in 1999 to simplify and speed up the legal system.

The Civil Procedure Rules are used by litigation solicitors in almost all civil cases, but do not apply to cases in the following areas:

  • Insolvency
  • Non-contentious or common form probate
  • Mental Capacity Act
  • Family law proceedings
  • Adoption proceedings
  • Election petitions in the High Court

The Civil Procedure Rules

The CPR were written to provide litigation solicitors and members of the public looking to represent themselves with clear guidance on the way to go about bringing a civil court case.

The rules provide a framework for allocating cases to different ‘tracks’ based on the value of the claim, and in each case provide a timetable for litigation. By reducing the time taken up by each case, the rules aim to reduce the cost of going to court, and in doing so to improve access to the civil justice system for everyone.

Default judgements

Under the CPR, cases are commenced when the party bringing the case submits a claim form.

The defendant is given 14 days to reply with an acknowledgement of service. If they fail to do so the claimant can apply for a default judgement. If the defendant does file an acknowledgement of service, they then have 28 days to file their defence. If the defendant fails to file their defence the claimant can also apply for a default judgement.

Default judgement awards the case to the claimant for the amount claimed.

The only bars to default judgement are if the action was brought under part 8 of the CPR concerning claims on a point of law where the facts are not disputed, or if the claim is for delivery of goods subject to an agreement regulated by the Consumer Credit Act 1974.

Contact Law works with civil litigation solicitors throughout the UK - call us on 0800 1777 162 or fill in the web-form opposite to talk to one of our advisors.

0800 1777 162
or fill in the form
Our trained advisor contacts you
Your chosen specialist solicitor calls you
Quick enquiry form
Area of law:
What our clients say about us
"This was the first time I've been to court, which was a nerve-racking experience for me. However, I felt very prepared, I understood my case and representation - this was down to you."
Gavin, criminal motoring, Oct 15
"Your service, and the prompt call back from your recommended firm was very good. I would not hesitate to call again or recommend your service."
Ian, employment law, Truro, July 15
"The firm were excellent, could not have been better! They are exactly what I need right now."
Linda, criminal defence, Thames Ditton, Jul 15
"Your contact and service was immediate and utmost professional, 10/10."
TF, conveyancing, Dudley, Jun 15
"I appreciate the service that you provide. I found you to be courteous, efficient and reassuring at a time when my confidence in justice is completely negative."
Patrick, litigation, Pontypridd, Jun 15
"I cannot tell you how much I appreciate the speed of which you came back to me in. If anyone else can benefit from your help like I have done, it would make my day."
Gail M, family law, Potters Bar, Jun 15
"Your assistance was extremely helpful. Particularly to someone who in 40 years of business has never experienced this sort of issue."
TD, commercial litigation, Galashiels, Apr 15
"It is difficult to express the value Contact Law has to someone like me who had very little understanding of the law and how to proceed forward with my case. Thank you for the service you provided."
AE, defamation law, Worthing, Apr 15
"Thank you for the efficient service I received. I was contacted by your solicitor on the same day as my request. Your quick response to my situation made me feel secure."
AN, employment law, London, Apr 15
"Your service was excellent, very fast and informative. I never got the impression of being pressurised at all. The solicitor you recommended was also excellent – very knowledgeable and supportive."
JHD, Motoring law, Liverpool, Apr 15
Contact Law supports the endeavours of STAE and commends all the work they are undertaking to assist in the plight of the Asian Elephant


We use cookies on the Contact Law site to help us improve it.

If you would like to allow our cookies, please click 'Continue' or carry on browsing. For more information on cookies and how to change your settings, click 'More info'.