I took out a money claim to recover money owed.
The Defendant hired a Solicitor who sent and acknowledgement and applied for extra time, 28 days, to file a defence, I made no objection to this application and the court never put it in front of a judge for ratifying.
However, 28 days later when the date specified by the Solicitor on their sample order had passed, no defence had been filed, so I applied for the judgement to be made by default as no defence has been filed.
The Solicitor then called me (4 days past filing date) requesting further information so that they could begin to put together their defence... (BEGIN to??!) and I pointed out that I had already applied for Judgement as they were now out of time (CPR 12.3 (2)a "The Claimant may obtain Judgement by Default where acknowledgement of service has been filed but a defence has not been filed and the time for filing has expired).
The Solicitor said that the extra 21 days dont start until they are rubber stamped by a judge.
Today I received notification from the Court that the request for judgement has been returned by the judge for referral to a District Judge.
So, my question is:
Where extra time is requested and not challenged, is it accepted that the extra time is granted by agreement?
Or can this defendant solicitor continue to delay filing until they get a rubber stamp agreeing extra time?
My reading of the rules that where extra time is agreed 28 days would be given, would apply where no challenge is made to the request for extra time.
How do I challenge this and stop them late filing please?