Plaint – Particulars, Procedure and Return

PLAINT – PARTICULARS, PROCEDURE AND RETURN

Introduction

Order 7 – Rules 1 to 8 particulars in a plaint

Order 7 should be read with Section 26 of the Code.

Rule 9 procedure on plaint being admitted

Rules 10 to 10-B return of plaint, and appearance of parties

Rules 11 to 13 rejection of plaint

Rules 14 to 17 production of documents

Order 3 calls a party to appear in a court either in person or through a recognized agent or a pleader.

Order 5 summons to a defendant with provisions regarding issuance and service of summons; read with Sections 2 7 to 29 of the Code.

Meaning

The expression “plaint”

  • not been defined in the Code
  • a statement of claim,
  • a document, by which the suit is instituted.
  •  objectifies the grounds  of which assistance of the court is sought by the plaintiff
  •  It is a pleading of the plaintiff

Particulars

Order 7 The plaint shall contain the following particulars

  • Rule 1 (a) states the name of the court in which the suit is brought
  • Rule 1 (b) states the
    • name,
    • description and,
    • place of residence of the plaintiff
  • Rule 1(C) states the
    • name,
    • description and,
    • place of residence of the defendant
  • Rule 1 (d)     states statement to that effect where the plaintiff or defendant is a minor or a person of unsound mind,
  • Rule 1 (e)     states the facts constituting the cause of action and when it arose
  • Rule 1 (f)      states the facts showing that the court has jurisdiction
  • Rule 1 (g)     states the reliefs claimed by the plaintiff, simply or in the  alternative
  • Rule 1 (h)     where the plaintiff has allowed a set-off or relinquished a portion of his claim, the amount so allowed or relinquished
  • Rule 1 (i)     states a statement of the value of the subject-matter of the suit for jurisdiction and court fees
  • Rule 2 states the precise amount claimed
    • where the suit is for recovery of money,
    • Where the suit is for accounts or mesne profits or movables in the possession of the defendant or for debts which cannot be determined, the approximate amount or value thereof
  • Rule 3 states description of the property sufficient to identification where the subject-matter of the suit is immovable property
  • Rule 4 states the facts showing that the plaintiff has an actual existing interest in the subject-matter and that he has taken steps that may be necessary to enable him to file such a suit where the plaintiff files a suit in a representative capacity
  • Rule 5 states the interest and liability of the defendant in the subject-matter of the suit
  • Rule 6 states the ground upon which the exemption from the law of limitation for the claim where the suit is time-barred

Parties to suit

  • One or more plaintiff
  • One or more defendant
  • Particulars like
    • Name
    • Fathers name
    • Permanent address
    • Age

Must be stated properly

Cause of action

Rule 11(a)

Every suit presupposes the existence of a cause of action against the defendant because if there is no cause of action, the plaint will have to be rejected.

In Ganesh Trading Co. v. Moji Ram AIR 1978 SC 484 the term “cause of action” explained as

Bundle of facts a plaintiff required to prove before they further proceed

Rule 8 where the plaintiff seeks relief in respect of several distinct claims or causes of action founded upon separate and distinct grounds he should state them as far as possible separately and distinctly.

Jurisdiction

  • The plaint must state all the facts showing how the court has pecuniary and territorial jurisdiction over the subject-matter of the suit.
  • The plaintiff must state in the plaint the valuation of the subject-matter of the suit for the purposes of the pecuniary jurisdiction of the court and court fees.

Relief

  • Every plaint must state specifically the relief claimed by the plaintiff either simply or in the alternative.
  • Where the relief is founded on separate and distinct grounds, they should be stated so.
  • Where the plaintiff is entitled to more  than one relief in respect of the same cause of action, it is open for him to claim all or any of such  reliefs

Provided

  • Order 2 Rule 2 (3) if he omits, except with the leave of the court, to sue for any of the particular relief, he will not afterward be allowed to claim the relief so omitted.

Admission of plaint: Rule 9

  • Provides for filing of copies of the plaint by the plaintiff and also requires him to pay requisite fees for the service of summons on the defendants within seven days

Return of plaint: Rules 10, 10-A, 10-B

The plaint to be presented to the proper court in which the suit ought to have been filed and must be returned in the following cases-

  • where at any stage of the suit, the court finds that it has no jurisdiction either territorial or pecuniary or with regard to the subject-matter of the suit
  • Rule 10 A prescribes the procedure to be followed by a court before the plaint is ordered to be returned
  • serving the summons on the defendants where the return of plaint is made after the appearance of the defendants
  • The judge returning the plaint should make endorsements on it regarding:

(i) The date of presentation;

(ii) The date of return;

(iii) The name of the

(iv)The reasons or returning

Rejection of plaint under Rule 11

The plaint will be rejected in the following cases-

  • Where plaint does not disclose the cause of action
  • Where relief claimed is undervalued
  • Where plaint is insufficiently stamped
  • Where suit is barred by law
  • Where plaint is not in duplicate
  • Where there is non -compliance with statutory provisions
  • if the plaint signed by a person not authorized by the plaintiff and the defect is not cured within the time granted by the court1 the plaint can be rejected
  • plaint is found to be vexatious and meritless not disclosing a clear right to sue

Procedure on rejection of plaint under Rule 12

  • Where a plaint is rejected by a court, the judge will pass an order to that effect and will record reasons for such rejection.

Effect of rejection of plaint: Rule 13

  • If the plaint is rejected on any grounds, the plaintiff is not thereby restricted from presenting a fresh plaint in respect of the same cause of action.

Appeal

  • An order rejecting a plaint is a deemed “decree” within the meaning of Section 2 (2) of the Code, and, therefore, is appealable.

Rule 14 enjoins the plaintiff to produce at the time of the presentation

  • deal with the production of documents by the plaintiff
  • The object underlying is to exclude the production of documents of a doubtful nature at a later stage
  • The court has wide discretion allow or disallow production of documents at a later stage
  • But not apply to the following  documents:

(i) Documents reserved for the purpose of cross-examination of the defendant’s witnesses

(ii) Documents handed over to a witness merely to refresh his memory.

Conclusion

Order 7 Rules 1 to 8 are dealing with the particulars in a plaint. Where Rule 9 procedures on plaint being admitted and rules 10 to 10-B return of plaint, and appearance of parties and Rules 11 to 13 rejection of plaint with the rules 14 to 17 production of documents. In the view of jurisdiction, the plaint must state all the facts showing how the court has pecuniary and territorial jurisdiction over the subject-matter of the suit. The plaintiff must state in the plaint the valuation of the subject-matter of the suit for the purposes of the pecuniary jurisdiction of the court and court fees. For relief, every plaint must state specifically the relief claimed by the plaintiff either simply or in the alternative. Various grounds of Rejection of plaint under Rule 11like at disclosing the cause of action, the relief claimed is undervalued, the plaint is insufficiently stamped, the suit is barred by law, etc. then we have a procedure for rejection of the plaint under Rule 12 and effect of rejection of plaint: Rule 13 which states if the plaint is rejected on any grounds, the plaintiff is not thereby restricted from presenting a fresh plaint in respect of the same cause of action.

Also Read: Construction of Pleadings and Amendment Perspectives

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