Cockell (trading as Cockell Building Services) v Holton

Practice – Civil litigation. The claimant builder carried out some remedial work for the defendant after a fire at the defendant's house. The claimant brought a claim against the defendant for the alleged underpayment. The defendant filed a counterclaim, alleging bad workmanship. He failed to comply with an unless order to serve and file with the court a re-pleaded counterclaim by a certain date in March 2015 and before the trial in July and the counterclaim was struck out. The defendant applied for relief from sanctions. The Technology and Construction Court ruled that the application for relief from sanctions had to fail where there had been a serious and substantial breach of the order. However, the defendant was permitted to amend his defence to plead the material in the new draft of the counterclaim as a defence to the claimant's claim in respect of the alleged underpayment.

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