CIVIL

Summary Judgement

Amended by The Commercial Courts Act, 2015 and inserted in Code of Civil procedure as :

Order XIII-A

Summary Judgement

  1. Scope of and classes of suits to which this Order applies. – (1) This Order sets out the procedure by which Courts may decide a claim pertaining to any Commercial Dispute without recording oral evidence.
    (2) For the purposes of this Order, the word “claim” shall include-
    (a) part of a claim;

(b) any particular question on which the claim (whether in whole or in part) depends; or

(c) a counterclaim, as the case may be.

(3) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary, an application for summary judgement under this Order shall not be made in a suit in respect of any Commercial Dispute that is originally filed as a summary suit under Order XXXVII.

  1. Stage for application for summary judgement. – An applicant may apply for summary judgement at any time after summons has been served on the defendant:
    Provided that, no application for summary judgement may be made by such applicant after the Court has framed the issues in respect of the suit.
  2. Grounds for summary judgement. – The Court may give a summary judgement against a plaintiff or defendant on a claim if it considers that-
    (a) the plaintiff has no real prospect of succeeding on the claim or the defendant has no real prospect of successfully defending the claim, as the case may be; and

(b) there is no other compelling reason why the claim should not be disposed of before recording of oral evidence.

  1. Procedure. – (1) An application for summary judgement to a Court shall, in addition to any other matters the applicant may deem relevant, include the matters set forth in sub-clauses (a) to (f) mentioned hereunder:-
    (a) the application must contain a statement that it is an application for summary judgement made under this Order;

(b) the application must precisely disclose all material facts and identify the point of law, if any

(c) in the event the applicant seeks to rely upon any documentary evidence, the applicant must,-

(i) include such documentary evidence in its application, and

(ii) identify the relevant content of such documentary evidence on which the applicant relies;

(d) the application must state the reason why there are no real prospects of succeeding on the claim or defending the claim, as the case may be;

(e) the application must state what relief the applicant is seeking and briefly state the grounds for seeking such relief.

(2) Where a hearing for summary judgement is fixed, the respondent must be given at least thirty days’ notice of:-
(a) the date fixed for the hearing; and

(b) the claim that is proposed to be decided by the Court at such hearing.

(3) The respondent may, within thirty days of the receipt of notice of application of summary judgement or notice of hearing (whichever is earlier), file a reply addressing the matters set forth in clauses (a) to (f) mentioned hereunder in addition to any other matters that the respondent may deem relevant:-
(a) the reply must precisely-

(i) disclose all material facts;

(ii) identify the point of law, if any; and

(iii) state the reasons why the relief sought by the applicant should not be granted;

(b) in the event the respondent seeks to rely upon any documentary evidence in its reply, the respondent must-

(i) include such documentary evidence in its reply; and

(ii) identify the relevant content of such documentary evidence on which the respondent relies;

(c) the reply must state the reason why there are real prospects of succeeding on the claim or defending the claim, as the case may be;

(d) the reply must concisely state the issues that should be framed for trial;

(e) the reply must identify what further evidence shall be brought on record at trial that could not be brought on record at the stage of summary judgement; and

(f) the reply must state why, in light of the evidence or material on record if any, the Court should not proceed to summary judgement.

  1. Evidence for hearing of summary judgement. – (1) Notwithstanding anything in this Order, if the respondent in an application for summary judgement wishes to rely on additional documentary evidence during the hearing, the respondent must:-
    (a) file such documentary evidence; and

(b) serve copies of such documentary evidence on every other party to the application at least fifteen days prior to the date of the hearing.

(2) Notwithstanding anything in this Order, if the applicant for summary judgement wishes to rely on documentary evidence in reply to the defendant’s documentary evidence, the applicant must:-
(a) file such documentary evidence in reply; and

(b) serve a copy of such documentary evidence on the respondent at least five days prior to the date of the hearing.

(3) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary, sub-rules (1) and (2) shall not require documentary evidence to be:-
(a) filed if such documentary evidence has already been filed; or

(b) served on a party on whom it has already been served.

  1. Orders that may be made by Court. – (1) On an application made under this Order, the Court may make such orders that it may deem fit in its discretion including the following:-
    (a) judgement on the claim;

(b) conditional order in accordance with Rule 7 mentioned hereunder;

(c) dismissing the application;

(d) dismissing part of the claim and a judgement on part of the claim that is not dismissed;

(e) striking out the pleadings (whether in whole or in part); or

(f) further directions to proceed for case management under Order XV-A.

(2) Where the Court makes any of the orders as set forth in sub-rule (1) (a) to (f), the Court shall record its reasons for making such order.

  1. Conditional order. – (1) Where it appears to the Court that it is possible that a claim or defence may succeed but it is improbable that it shall do so, the Court may make a conditional order as set forth in Rule 6 (1) (b).
    (2) Where the Court makes a conditional order, it may:-
    (a) make it subject to all or any of the following conditions:-

(i) require a party to deposit a sum of money in the Court;

(ii) require a party to take a specified step in relation to the claim or defence, as the case may be;

(iii) require a party, as the case may be, to give such security or provide such surety for restitution of costs as the Court deems fit and proper;

(iv) impose such other conditions, including providing security for restitution of losses that any party is likely to suffer during the pendency of the suit, as the Court may deem fit in its discretion; and

(b) specify the consequences of the failure to comply with the conditional order, including passing a judgement against the party that have not complied with the conditional order.

  1. Power to impose costs. – The Court may make an order for payment of costs in an application for summary judgement in accordance with the provisions of sections 35 and 35A of the Code.”
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Categories: CIVIL