How does your solicitor obtain a “judgement in default” in accident compensation claims?
Once either you or your solicitor has issued proceedings at court and served those proceedings on the Defendant (the person you are making your claim against and hold responsible for your accident) – the Defendant must acknowledge receipt and provide a Defence.
If an acknowledgement of service or a Defence is not received within the requisite time period specified by the court on the papers – an application can be made to the court for judgement in default of Defence.
On receipt of this application – the judge will check if a Defence has been received and if not you will receive a judgement in default. A hearing will still take place for an “assessment of damages” – in other words how much is your claim worth, but the issue of fault of legal liability will not be considered as judgement in default in essence means you have won on the point of liability.
The Defendant can apply to have the judgment set aside before the assessment of damages hearing – but the Defendant must show there is good reason why a Defence was not lodged at court within time.
Click accident claim legal dictionary to see to see other legal terms explained in plain English by a specialist solicitor.