Areas of Law / General Legal Advice

I’ve received a witness summons in a County Court case. I had no notice of this whatsoever, and the case is due to be heard while I’m abroad. Is there anything I can do?

The court has only limited powers to set aside a summons, for example on the grounds that you have no relevant evidence to give, the summons was obtained in bad faith, or it was oppressive. You, or preferably your solicitor, should contact the solicitors acting for the party who has summonsed you and request that they apply to adjourn the trial. Such an application may well fail, however, such are the pressures on court time. Take advice urgently, but don’t ignore the summons since you could be fined or sent to prison for contempt.

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