Pre-action steps under the Uniform Civil Rules SA 2020

Pre-Action Steps: Pre-Action Claim vs Final Notice

Pre-Action Steps: Pre-Action Claim vs Final Notice

The introduction of the South Australian Uniform Civil Rules 2020 has caused several changes to the steps that would-be litigants must take prior to initiating proceedings in court.

One such change involves the new distinction between a “Pre-Action Claim” and a “Final Notice”.

Pre-Action Claims must comply with the requirements of rule 61.7 and must, amongst other things, be in writing, explain the basis of your case against the other party, include a Form P3 Costs Estimate (unless it is a personal injury matter) and suggest a suitable time for a Pre-Action Meeting (for more information regarding the mode and content of such a meeting, see my article here).

Final Notices generally require less detail than Pre-Action Claims but must be drafted in accordance with court Form P1 and filed with the court before being served on the other party.

Whether you use a Pre-Action Claim or a Final Notice will depend on the specific circumstances of your matter.

Generally speaking, you may consider using a Final Notice if you reasonably believe that the claim will be uncontested or is not genuinely contestable. In other circumstances you should consider using a Pre-Action Claim.

But what is considered reasonably contestable? Well, as the old school lawyers are fond of saying – that depends! The circumstances of legal matters vary so widely that it can be very difficult for non-lawyers (even those experienced in business) to discern which matters are genuinely contestable and which are not.

If you are in need of any assistance with regard to initiating proceedings in Court, pplease contact us on 08 7001 6135 and book an appointment with myself or my colleagues Rich Stanley and Danial Esmaili.

James (“Jimmy”) Williams

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