Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Law report - setting aside default judgments

Blakeney v Lister [2014] SC (Bda) 7 Civ

The Plaintiff had obtained default judgment against the Defendant nine years previously, due to failure to file and serve a document in breach of a court order that the Plaintiff could enter judgment if the Defendant failed to do so.

As it turned out, the Defendant had filed the document but had neglected to serve it on the Plaintiff. Nothing then was done for many years. In 2013, the Defendant applied to set the judgment aside.

Kawaley CJ found that the judgment was irregular, as the Registrar should have been requested to check the file (or should have checked the file in any event) before issuing judgment. He set the judgment aside. Due to the passage of time, he held that it would now be unjust for the parties to continue with the action, resulting in the case being aborted.

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