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A Practical Approach to Effective Litigation

A Practical Approach to Effective Litigation (8th edn)

Susan Blake
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date: 09 June 2023

16. Defending an Actionlocked

16. Defending an Actionlocked

  • Susan BlakeSusan BlakeDirector of Studies and Associate Dean, Inns of Court School of Law


This chapter focuses on the role of the defendant. The litigation system in England is adversarial, thus on the face of it the role of the defendant is potentially defensive, confrontational, and non cooperative. While the objective of the defendant will usually be to make the claim go away, the perhaps natural desire to take an approach that involves denial, delay, and obfuscation wherever possible must be resisted, or at least carefully considered. The chapter discusses the main types of defence to an action; dealing with the early stages of an action when a claim form is received; rules for drafting a defence; making a counterclaim; claiming a set-off; a general framework for a defence and counterclaim; and strategies and tactics in defending a case.

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