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What are the different Civil Litigation Stages in Suit Proceedings in Kolkata?

Civil Suit arises when disputes arises between 2 or more parties which are related to money or property or any other injury to his/her personal rights. The person who files a plaint against a dispute before a court of law which has civil nature is known as Plaintiff and the person against whom this plaint is filed or a civil case booked is known as Defendant.

Stages in Civil Litigation

There are few steps or stages in a civil matter before pronouncement of the Judgement:

1.      Step 1- Presentation of the Plaint or Filing of the Plaint under Order 7 of the CPC, 1908: –

The Plaint is a legal document which is filed before the court by a Plaintiff through his/her Legal Representative. The Plaint contains the facts and summary of the dispute arose between the parties i.e between Plaintiff and Defendant. Plaint contains the below mentioned contents:

  1.  Name of the Court where the litigation takes place
  2. Details of the parties contending the civil dispute
  3.   Facts of the case
  4.   The relief or damages claimed by the plaintiff
  5. The documents that substantiate the facts of the case
  6. The damages in case of money suits
  7. Proof of the defendant’s liability

2.      Step 2- Issuing of Summons under Order 5: –

 This step appears after the Plaint is filed by the Plaintiff before the court and when it is accepted by the court. After filing of the Plaint before the court, the Plaintiff needs to serve a notice to the Defendant against whom the case is filed. The summon needs to be issued within 30 days from the date of initiation of the suit. The summon is served to make an appearance of the defendant before the court on the date fixed for the same to give an opportunity to be heard.

3.      Step 3- The appearance of the Parties to the Dispute: –

It is mandatory for the Parties to appear before the court but if the defendant fail to appear, an ex-parte order under Order 9 is passed in favour of the plaintiff and if both the parties fail to appear, the court dismiss the case after giving them a fair chance to appear and answer the same.

4.      Step 4 – Written Statement under Order 8:

When the defendant receives the appearance summon from the plaintiff that a case has been booked against him before the court of law, he must appear before the court and file a Written Statement against the Plaint which is filed before the court within 30 days from the date of service of the summon. The defendant declares what he accepts and what he denies in the Written Statement and also mentions his counter-claims.

  • Step 5- Replication by the Plaintiff: – Replication is a reply against the Written Statement which is filed by the Plaintiff. Here, the plaintiff accepts and denies the allegations which the defendant mentioned in the Written Statement.
  • Step 6 – Production of documents by parties (plaintiff and defendant):- After filing of the Written Statement, the Plaintiff as well as the Defendant needs to produce the documents before the court which are in their possession and if the documents are not in their possession on which they rely, they should apply to the court to summon such person or authority. The parties also need to pay the cost of filing the documents before the court.

7.      Step 7 – Inspection and Discovery of the Documents

After submission of the documents, the parties can apply to the court for inspection of the documents and parties can also get access to the said documents. The parties can deny or admit the documents submitted by them.

8.      Step 8 – Examination: –

This step comes after filing of the plaint, Written Statement and documents before the court. Here, the court records the acceptance and denial of the allegations made by the Plaintiff and the Defendant in their Plaint, Written Statement and so on.  

9.      Step 9 – Framing of the Issues Involved under Order 14: –

Under this step, the Parties are allowed to submit the issues and after examining the issues, the court will frame the final set of issues. After the First Hearing and after analysing the Plaint and Written Statement and facts of the dispute, the court will frame the issues.

10. Step 10 – Summoning and Attendance of Witnesses under Order 16: – Now, the parties have to produce in the court the list of witnesses whom they rely on to give evidences or relevant documents related to the suit. The said list shall be provided before the court on the day appointed and not later than 15 days after the date on which issues are settled.

11.  Step 11 – Examination and Cross-Examination of the Witnesses:-

This step is very much vital since the sayings of the parties are recorded in the court of law. Under this step, the witnesses are examined. In the first hearing, the court asks both the parties if they agree or deny the allegations made by them. The plaintiff gets the first chance to begin unless the defendant proves otherwise. The plaintiff provides evidences and the defendant’s Advocate cross-examine the plaintiff and the witnesses. The plaintiff’s Advocate also gets an opportunity to cross-examine the witnesses of the defendant. 

12.  Step 12 – Arguments: –

When the examination and cross-examination is completed, the argument stage comes into existence. Now, the parties are asked to present their arguments.

13.  Step 13 – Judgment: –

After analysing the facts of the case, the court pronounce the judgement.

14.  Step 14 – Appeal, Review, Revision of the Judgment Passed

When the judgement is pronounced by the court and if the party is not satisfied with the judgement, they can apply for Review of the judgement within 30 days from the date of the judgement. The party who is not satisfied can also file a Revision Application/Petition to the Higher court and can also file an appeal to a Higher Court within 60 days to 90 days from the date of pronouncement of the judgement.

15.  Step 15 – Decree Execution

Under this step, the decree-holder forces the judgement-debtor to solemnize the mandate of the decree or order.

The above article explains the detail procedure or stages of a civil suit proceeding.

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