Judgments in default for liquidated demands
Where the claimant’s claim is for a debt or liquidated demand or for delivery of specific goods or chattels and the defendant has not entered an Appearance within time limited in the Civil Bill or having entered an Appearance, has not delivered a Defence within the time limited, the claimant may, in default of Appearance or Defence, apply in the Circuit Court Office for a judgment to be entered against the defendant.
Where the defendant shall, after action has been brought, satisfy the claimant\’s claim, the claimant may apply in the Office for Judgments for costs applicable to the claim. The application for judgment is to be supported by documents referred to below and shall be in accordance with prescribed forms.
An application for judgment in the Office shall be supported by:
- the sealed Civil Bill with endorsement of service;
- an affidavit or statutory declaration of service or service of notice thereof
- in the case of default of Appearance, a certificate by the County Registrar of no Appearance;
- in the case of a judgment application in default of Defence, a certificate certifying no Defence;
- an affidavit verifying the claim by the claimant or a person who cand swear positively as to the facts;
- a certificate by the claimant where he sues in person or by a solicitor, specifying the amount then actually due or certifying the goods or chattels in respect of which judgment is sought and which are still withheld by the defendant and
- certifying that no Defence has been served.
In the case of the claim by a State Department and certain other public bodies, a certificate under seal as to the matters may suffice in place of an affidavit. The affidavit must be made within 28 days of the date preceding the application.
On lodgement of the above papers, together with a stamped request for judgment in accordance with the Schedule to the Rules, judgment may be entered in the Office for the sum certified to be then actually due or the amount claimed in the Civil Bill, whichever is less or for delivery of the goods or chattels, as the case may be, together with costs according to the appropriate scale. If the claim is satisfied except as to costs, judgment may be entered in the Office for costs only.
Where there are two or more defendants and any one has defaulted in appearing or in delivering a Defence, the claimant may have judgment against, entered in the Office and issue execution against such defendant in default of Appearance and Defence. This is without prejudice to his right to proceed with the action against any other defendant, who may have entered an Appearance or delivered a Defence, as the case may be.
Reasonable costs as determined by the Court or County Registrar shall be allowed in cases of judgment by default. No judgment may be entered under this provision against a party who has been served with a Civil Bill outside the State.
The affidavit grounding the application shall confirm whether value added tax is payable by the claimant on his legal costs and, if so, whether the sum is recoverable by him from the Revenue Commissioners.
Default by Defendant in other Cases
In any case other than those in the above categories, where a defendant has defaulted in entering an appearance or delivering a Defence, the claimant may at any time after such default, on notice to be served to the defendant, not less than four clear days before the hearing, apply for judgment in accordance with forms prescribed in the Rules.
A motion for Judgment in default of Defence in actions claiming unascertained damages, in tort or contract may be served unless the claimant has given 14 days’ prior notice in writing to the defendant of his intention to serve a motion for Judgment and consenting to late entry of the Defence within 14 days of the letter.
If no Defence is entered within that period, the claimant shall be at liberty to serve the motion for Judgment in default of Defence. It shall be returnable to a date not less than 14 clear days from the date of the service and filed at least six days before the return date.
If, not later than seven days after service, the defendant delivers a Defence and not less than six days before the return date lodges a copy in the County Registrar\’s Office with the certified copy of the notice of motion, the motion shall be put in the Judge\’s list but shall stand struck out. The defendant shall pay to the claimant such sum in respect of his costs as may be determined by the County Registrar from time-to-time.
If, in any case the claimant can establish special reasons making it necessary to serve a notice of motion for Judgment in default of defence with greater urgency than in accordance with the above provisions, he may apply unilaterally to the Court for an Order giving him liberty to serve such notice of motion, giving not less than four clear days\’ notice to the defendant. Alternatively, the Judge may deem good the service of a notice of motion giving not less than four clear days\’ notice to the defendant.
Upon hearing the application, the Judge may on proof of default as above and on hearing evidence, verbal and otherwise, as may be adduced, give judgment upon the claimant\’s claim, endorsed on the Civil Bill. Alternatively he may give leave to the defendant to defend the whole or part of the claim upon such terms as he may consider just. The Judge or County Registrar may make such Order as to costs as he may consider just.
Where an application is brought for an Order for Judgment in default of Appearance or Defence against the party who has been served with a Civil Bill or originating document outside the State, an application must be supported by affidavit stating that in the deponent\’s belief:
- each claim is one within which the Court has jurisdiction under Convention or EU Regulation\’s to bring;
- that no Court in another State have exclusive jurisdiction under the Convention or Regulation;
- that the defendant or respondent has been served or has otherwise been able to receive a Civil Bill or originating document or notice thereof in sufficient time to enable him to arrange his defence and that all necessary steps required by the Convention/Regulation have been taken;
Notice of the application, together with a copy of the grounding affidavit, shall be served on the defendant at least 10 days before the hearing.
Default in Particular Cases
Where the claimant\’s claim in a Civil Bill is: for a debt or liquidated demand in money,
- for the delivery of a specific chattel or goods in an action for detinue,
- for enforcement, performance or carrying out of a trust or
- ejectment, with or without a claim for rent or mesne rates and
- the defendant has entered an Appearance or has delivered a Defence,
the claimant may apply to the Court for a summary judgment against the defendant in accordance with the following provisions, which also apply to all actions for ejectment whether or not the relationship of landlord and tenant has ever existed between the parties and whether or not the Civil Bill is based on title.
The application for summary judgment is made by motion on notice in the prescribed form and is served on the defendant, not less than four clear days before the hearing. It shall be supported by affidavit made by the claimant or some other person who can swear positively as to the facts verifying the claim. It must state the person’s belief, that the defendant has no bona fide defence to the claim and that the Appearance has been entered and the Defence has been delivered solely for the purpose of delay.
Upon the hearing of the application, no party has the right to offer evidence otherwise than by affidavit and the claimant shall be limited to the affidavit specified in Rules. The Judge may require or permit any party to produce further evidence. It may be given verbally or by affidavit as the Judge may require or permit.
On hearing of the application, judgment may be ordered to be entered for the claimant unless the defendant: satisfies the Judge that prima facie, he has a good defence to the claim, or pays into Court to abide the results of the action, such sum as may be deemed sufficient to entitle him to defend.
Other than in cases for recovery of land for non-payment of rent, if it appears that the Defence set up by the defendant applies only to a part of the and that part is admitted, the claimant shall have judgment for such part of his claim as the Defence does not apply to or as is admitted, subject to such terms, if any, as to staying execution, payment of costs or otherwise, as the Judge may order. The defendant may be allowed to defend the balance of the claim.
Where the Judge does not order judgment to be entered, he may dismiss the application, give the defendant leave to defend unconditionally or subject to such terms as to giving security or as to the time and mode of trial, as he may think fit. Or with the consent of all the parties, treat the hearing of the application as the trial of the action and dispose of the matter in a summary manner.
If it appears to the Judge that any defendant ought to be allowed to defend the matter and that any other defendant ought not be allowed to defend, the former may be allowed to defend and the judgment may be ordered against the latter. The claimant may issue execution upon such judgment without prejudice to his right to proceed against the former. In such applications for summary judgment, the Judge may make such orders for costs as he may considers just.