Inordinate and Inexcusable Delay in UK Law

Leading Cases
  • Birkett v James
    • House of Lords
    • 25 Mai 1977

    To justify dismissal of an action for want of prosecution the delay relied upon must relate to time which the plaintiff allows to lapse unnecessarily after the writ has been issued. A late start makes it the more incumbent upon the plaintiff to proceed with all due speed and a pace which might have been excusable if the action had been started sooner may be inexcusable in the light of the time that has already passed before the writ was issued.

  • Securum Finance Ltd v Ashton and another
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 21 Jun 2000

    The position, now, is that the court must address the application to strike out the second action with the overriding objective of the CPR in mind – and must consider whether the claimant's wish to have "second bite at the cherry" outweighs the need to allot its own limited resources to other cases.

  • Rath v C. S. Lawrence & Partners
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 18 Dez 1990

    For this purpose a causal link must be proved between the delay and the inability to have a fair trial or other prejudice, as the case may be.

  • Shtun v Zalejska
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 28 Mar 1996

    It is not, in my judgment, essential in every case that there should be evidence of particular respects in which potential witnesses' memories have faded, still less that it need be shown that such fading of memories occurred in a particular period.

  • Allen v Sir Alfred McAlpine & Sons Ltd
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 11 Jan 1968

    But also, if after the plaintiff has been guilty of unreasonable delay the defendant so conducts himself as to induce the plaintiff to incur further costs in the reasonable belief that the defendant intends to exercise his right to proceed to trial notwithstanding the plaintiff's delay, he cannot obtain dismissal of the action unless the plaintiff has thereafter been guilty of further unreasonable delay.

  • Thorpe v Alexander Fork Lift Trucks Ltd
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 20 Jun 1975

    As I said in Sweeney's case (1974) 1 W. L. R. 208, theplaintiff is not entitled to delay as of right for four years from the accident, three years before issuing the writ and another year for service. It is his duty, once the writ is issued, to serve it promptly and get on with it promptly. So in this case it was the duty of the plaintiff, having issued the writ, to serve it promptly and to proceed with the case with expedition.

  • Arbuthnot Latham Bank Ltd v Trafalgar Holdings Ltd
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 16 Dez 1997

    The position is the same as it is under the first limb of Birkett v James. In exercising its discretion as to whether to strike out the second action, that court should start with the assumption that if a party has had one action struck out for abuse of process some special reason has to be identified to justify a second action being allowed to proceed.

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  • Value Added Tax Tribunals Rules 1986
    • UK Non-devolved
    • 01 de Janeiro de 1986
    ...... has devolved, has been guilty of inordinate and inexcusable delay. . (3) Except in ......
  • Courts and Legal Services Act 1990
    • UK Non-devolved
    • 01 de Janeiro de 1990;. . . (ii) avoid unnecessary delays;. . . (b) as to the supervision, by persons ... . (a) that there has been inordinate and. inexcusable delay on the part of the. ......
  • Act of Sederunt (Sheriff Appeal Court Rules) 2015
    • Scotland
    • 01 de Janeiro de 2015
    ...... CHAPTER 8 . REFUSAL OF APPEAL DUE TO DELAY . Application to refuse appeal due to delay . ... are that- (a) there has been an inordinate and inexcusable delay by another party or another ......
  • Act of Sederunt (Sheriff Court Rules) (Miscellaneous Amendments) 2009
    • Scotland
    • 01 de Janeiro de 2009
    ......delay Dismissal of actions due to delay . S-14 . ... the court to dismiss the action due to inordinate and inexcusable delay by another party or another ......
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Books & Journal Articles
  • Court of Appeal
    • Núm. 62-3, June 1998
    • Journal of Criminal Law, The
    ...... Court of Appeal to delay lodging notice of appeal against conviction ..., in that there has been an inordinate and inexcusable delay in commencing those ......
    • Núm. 31-6, November 1968
    • The Modern Law Review
    ...... in situations where there is inordinate delay in the prosecution of an action and ... (or (b) The delay must be inexcusable.s the large number of protracted, day ......
    • Núm. 41-5, September 1978
    • The Modern Law Review
    ...... help,s a process that adds to the delay without, usually, in the end securing ... the plaintiffs delay has been inordinate and inexcusable, to the prejudice of the ......
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Law Firm Commentaries
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