Are there any practical tips that should be kept in kept in mind while issuing or responding to a pre-action letter in your jurisdiction?
Practical tips that should be keep in mind while issuing a legal notice in India:
- It is advisable to approach a lawyer or a legal expert for this purpose in order to avoid committing any mistake. A lawyer with good skills of drafting can collect information from you and send a notice on your behalf.
- The notice must be in writing and must be sent on the letterhead of the entity/ lawyer sending the same.
- It must contain all the necessary details of both the parties along with the complete facts.
- The notice must contain proper summary of relief claimed along with the supporting documents. If any.
- Issuer must specify a time limit for the receiver to reply to the notice.
- It should be properly signed by the person sending the same.
In India, if a person chooses to reply to a legal notice, he/she must keep in mind the following tips:
- It is advisable to hire a lawyer for the purpose in order to avoid mistakes.
- The reply must be in writing and must be sent on the letterhead of the person along with the necessary details and facts of the issue.
- Check the limitation period to reply to the notice.
- Check the contractual obligation of the Claimant, if any.
- It is advisable not to admit or accept any of the allegation made by the sender.
- If the content in the notice is not relevant, then one can counter threat a claim or damaged against a sender.
- Are there any clauses that would be usual to see in a letter before action or and/or that are standard practice in your jurisdiction which do not appear in the Standard document, Letter before action: Cross-border (see below)? Are there are any clauses included which you would not normally see, and if so for what reason (for example, is it because they are not enforceable)?
[ON HEADED NOTEPAPER OF POTENTIAL CLAIMANT OR POTENTIAL CLAIMANT’S SOLICITORS]
For the attention of [the Senior Manager OR Directors and Company Secretary OR [Named individual]]
[NAME OF POTENTIAL RESPONDENT OR POTENTIAL RESPONDENT’S BUSINESS OR POTENTIAL RESPONDENT’S LAWYERS/SOLICITORS]
[ADDRESS LINE 1]
[ADDRESS LINE 2]
Dear [NAME OF ADDRESSEE],
[RESPONDENT’S NAME]: [CLAIM DETAILS]
- We have been instructed by [FULL NAME OF POTENTIAL CLAIMANT] of [ADDRESS] to [SPECIFY THE REASON FOR WHICH LETTER OF CLAIM IS BEING SENT]. We refer to [SPECIFY RELEVANT PRIOR CORRESPONDENCE].
CIRCUMSTANCES RESULTING IN THE CLAIM
[SET OUT THE BASIS ON WHICH THE CLAIM IS MADE (THAT IS, WHY THE POTENTIAL RESPONDENT IS LIABLE), AND A CLEAR SUMMARY OF THE FACTS ON WHICH THE CLAIM IS BASED.]
RELEVANT DOCUMENTS [OPTIONAL]
- We enclose the following copy of documents that are relevant to the Claim:
- [LIST THE COPY DOCUMENTS ENCLOSED WITH THIS LETTER.]
- Please provide to us within [SPECIFY THE TIME-LIMIT] days copies of the following documents, which we believe are relevant to the Claim and are likely to be in [your OR [NAME OF INDIVIDUAL OR COMPANY]’s] control:
- [LIST THE DOCUMENTS AND DOCUMENT TYPES REQUESTED.] [OPTIONAL- WHERE REQUIRED FOR DISCOVERY PROCESS]
This is not purported to be an exhaustive list of documents relevant to the Claim. Please also provide any other documents that you consider to be relevant and confirm that [you OR [NAME OF INDIVIDUAL OR COMPANY]] will take proper and appropriate steps to ensure no relevant documents, including electronic documents, that are in [your OR [NAME OF INDIVIDUAL OR COMPANY]’s] control, are altered, lost, destroyed or disposed.
[SET OUT THE DETAILS OF PAYMENT OF DEBT/OBLIGATION OR THE POTENTIAL CLAIMANT’S DEMANDS WITH REPECT TO THE REMEDIAL ACTION REQUIRED FROM THE POTENTIAL RESPONDENT. SET OUT THE METHOD OF PAYMENT AND THE ADDRESS TO WHICH IT CAN BE SENT OR THE DETAILS OF HOW CAN THE POTENITAL CLAIMANT CAN ADDRESS THE PONETIAL CLAIMANT’S CLAIM]. You may contact us on [PROVIDE CONTACT DETAILS] to discuss possible repayment and remedial options.]
[FUNDING ARRANGEMENTS] [OPTIONAL/ WHERE APPLICABLE]
[You should note that our client has obtained [INSERT REFERENCE TO ANY THIRD-PARTY FUNDING ARRANGEMENT, CONDITIONAL FEE ARRANGEMENT AND/OR AFTER THE EVENT INSURANCE POLICY AND WHETHER YOU INTEND TO SEEK TO RECOVER ANY RELATED ADDITIONAL LIABILITIES FROM THE RESOPONDENT]
[ALTERNATIVE DISPUTE RESOLUTION]
[SET OUT THE FORM OF ALTERNATIVE DISPUTE RESOLUTION (IF ANY) THAT THE POTENTIAL CLAIMANT/CLIENT CONSIDERS THE MOST SUITABLE AND INVITE THE PONTETIAL RESPONDENT TO AGREE TO THIS].
[INSTRUCTING AN EXPERT] [OPTIONAL- WHERE APPLICABLE]
[We propose that one of the following experts be jointly instructed as [a single joint expert OR an agreed expert] in the field of [SPECIFY FIELD], on the issue of [SPECIFY ISSUE]: [LIST PROPOSED EXPERTS].]
THE NEXT STEPS
- An acknowledgment to this letter should be provided within [SPECIFY THE TIME-LIMIT] days of receipt, namely by [DATE]. [Your OR [NAME OF INDIVIDUAL OR COMPANY]’S] full response to this letter should be provided no later than [SPECIFY THE TIME-LIMIT] days after the date of this letter, namely by [DATE].
- Our client reserves all its rights, including the right to commence proceedings (without further reference to you should that prove necessary and appropriate) to obtain a court judgment requiring you to [SET OUT THE RELEVANT ACTION REQUIRED FROM THE POTENTIAL CLAIMANT].
- [Ignoring this letter may lead to our client starting proceedings against you and may increase your liability for costs.]
|[NAME OF POTENTIAL CLAIMANT OR POTENTIAL CLAIMANT”S SOLICITORS]
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