Small Claims Court – Documentation

The Claim Form -N1

In order to commence a claim an N1 form needs to be completed. The first details the amount of the claim (quantum), the Court Fees and any solicitors costs. Details of the parties and particularly the address for the service of proceedings is also included along with a brief summary of the claim.

The second page contains the Particulars of the Claim which should be sufficiently detailed for the Court to be able to quickly understand the nature of the claim and should explain in detail how the quantum has been calculated.
There is space on the second page for the details of any solicitor and finally a Statement of Truth should be completed at the bottom of the page. The completed N1 should then be filed at the County Court along with the appropriate fee.

will complete the N1 form for you, have it checked and signed by a solicitor and filed at County Court within 24 hours of receiving the Court Fee.

Please note that it is now a court requirement that filing can only take place if the fees are paid in cash or by cheque supported by a cheque guarantee card. Our system allows us to clear the court funds prior to issue – 7 days must be allowed for this.

The Notice of Issue – N205A

Service of proceedings is carried out by the Court using first class post. An acknowledgment of service is sent out from the Court advising the date of issue and the date of postal service. This form also advises a time limit for the Defendant to make a response. If there is no response the Request for Judgment on the bottom of the form should be completed and returned to the Court.

The Request for Judgment is filed by Small Claims on receipt of the filing fee of £10.00 (please see our fees and costs page.

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Employment law related claims which made end up going to a tribunal include redundancy, discrimination and unfair or constructive dismissal. Most claims by employees against employers are settled out of court. However, if you need to take your case to a tribunal then you need to make sure that you are well represented by experienced and knowledgable specialist employment solicitors.
Allocation Questionnaire – N150
If the claim is defended the Court will send out a notice to that effect to the Claimant along with an Allocation Questionnaire (AQ). This should be completed as quickly as possible and returned to the Court. If the claim is for more than £1,000.00 an allocation fee of £80.00 is also required by the Court made payable to H M Paymaster General.

Please note that any cheque forwarded to the court must be supported by funds. If the cheque “bounces” the court will require payment in cash only within 7 days and if this is not received there will be an automatic judgment against you – with the risk of enforcement proceedings.

Within the AQ there is the facility to change the location of the court hearing. You can select your local court by looking in the telephone directory for the “County Court” and including this with a reason for the selection: local to you, local to your place of work, local to both you and the Defendant. One important section deals with dates when you cannot attend – if on holiday or working abroad. Also you must advise the court of any witnesses attending – including yourself!

On receipt of the AQ the Court allocates the claim to their appropriate track – usually the Small Claims Track – and will set a date for a hearing.

Notice of Allocation (Hearing) – N157
This Notice confirms that the claim has been allocated to the Small Claims Track and advises of the date and time for the hearing. Also on the form are the District Judges instructions. These instructions usually request that any statements or documentary evidence which is to be produced at the hearing must be forwarded to the Court and the other side by a specific date.

It is essential that the instructions are complied with otherwise the Judge may well rule that the documents are not admissible.

Judgment for Claimant (in default) – N30
If no defence is filed the Court will be requested to issue a Judgment in Default. This details how much the Defendant must pay the Claimant. The Judgment will have been entered on the Register of County Court Judgments – but this entry is removed if payment is made within one month of the date of the Judgment.

Obtaining a Judgment is just the first part of the recovery process – please see our page dealing with enforcement to see the various methods of enforcing a Judgment.

Copy Documents

It is not possible for us to forward copies of all documents until such time as there is a relevant response from the Defendant or the claim has been issued at court. The time and costs would make the forwarding of all non-essential documents impractical. However, after the issue of proceedings we do supply copies of the N205A and the N30 (above) and we forward copies of all other relevant documents – especially court responses – as soon as they are received. Please note that it is our policy to forward copies in TIFF format as an email attachment at a resolution of 200 dpi. We do not forward copies by post with the exception of the N157 (by email and post to ensure receipt) and the N150 for completion by the Claimant. Please ensure that your service provider is able to accept email attachments.

Should copy documents which do not comply with the above parameters be requested we must make a charge of £10.00 to cover our administration costs. This must be included with the request.

Client Documents

It is usually necessary for us to request supporting documentation for appending to the Claim Form or for understanding the background to a claim. We are not able to take any form of responsibility for original documents and copies only should be forwarded to us. The same applies if documents are to be mailed to the court or to the Defendant. The original documents should be retained by the client for production in court if required or for the production of further copies. Under no circumstances should original documents be entrusted to the postal service.

If the return of copy documents is required we must make a charge for this service. We will normally request a reply paid envelope to be forwarded to us or, if the client prefers, we will apply our nominal charge of £10.00 as detailed above. If Special Delivery is required or padded bags we will advise the cost of these prior to despatch.