Concise Form with Precision and Certainty

The material facts must be stated in a summary form, succinctly and in a strict chronological order. All unnecessary allegations and their details should be omitted in order to attain brevity  in pleadings. Pleading is not a place for fine writing but only assertion of hard facts. It is desirable to go straight to the point and state fact, boldly, clearly and concisely and to avoid all paraphrasing and all circumlocutions. As far as possible an active voice should be preferred to passive in pleading. The same person or thing should be called by the same name throughout the pleading. The pleading shall be divided into paragraph numbered consecutively. Dates sums and numbers shall be expressed in figures, even though the pleading should be concise, it should never be obscure. It should be both concise , as well as precise. The parties cannot change the case and get the relief. As already discussed the unnecessary facts should be omitted from the pleadings. Let us summarise them.

(1)Matters of law,

(2)Matters of evidence,

(3)Matters not alleged in the opponent‟s pleading,

(4)Matters presumed by law,

(5)The performance of condition precedent,

(6)The words of documents,

 (7)Matters affecting cost only,

(8)Matters not material to the case,

(9)The defendant need not plead to the prayer of the plaintiff,

(10)The defendant need not plead to the damages claimed or their amount. The above details should not be pleaded in a pleading.

A good pleader should bear in mind the following points in relation to a pleading:

 (1) Describe the names and places accurately and spell them correctly and adopt the same spelling throughout.  

(2) One should always avoid the use of pronoun as „He‟, „She‟, „This‟, or „That‟. the plaintiff or the defendant should not be addressed by their names at some place and at some place by the word „Plaintiff‟ and „ defendant‟, call them throughout your pleading by the expression „the plaintiff‟ and „the defendant‟ as the case may be. Where one has to distinguish between two or more plaintiff or defendant, call in your pleading, „the plaintiff Ramashankar‟ or „the defendant-Hariharan‟ as the case may be.

(3) A lawyers should allege all facts boldly and plainly. he should use the language of the document or the act itself; and he should not invent his own language however correct it may be, e.g. of a policy becomes void in case, “the assured shall die of his own hand.” Now, inthis case while drafting the pleading instead “ the assured killed himself” or he committed suicide,” plead that “the assured died of his own hand.”

 (4) A lawyer should allege all facts boldly and plainly. He should avoid ifs and buts. As far as possible complex sentences should also be avoided. Facts should not be repeated. Pleading should be divided into separate paragraphs and as far as possible only one fact should be contained by one paragraph embodying all necessary particulars in the pleading.  

(5) Every pleading shall be signed by the party and his advocate and, if the party is unable to sign the pleading it may be signed by this agent.  

 (6) Every pleading shall be verified by the party or the parties. A verification can also be made by any other person if acquainted with the facts of pleadings. False verification is an offence punishable by the Indian Penal Code.

 (7) In cases where a corporation is a party, pleading may be verified by Secretary or by the director or by any other principal officer of that corporation who is able to depose the facts of the case. in verification clause one should denote according to the numbers of paragraph o his own knowledge and what he verified upon the information received and verified to be true.   

Alternative Pleas:

Law does not prohibit a plaintiff from relying on several distinct and different rights in the alternative or a defendant from raising as many distinct and separate defences as he like. For example, a plaintiff may sue for possession of a house belonging to A, as an adopted son of A, and in the alternative under a will executed by A in the plaintiff‟s favour.

A plaintiff may claim proprietary right in a land, or, in the alternative easementary right In an action for pre-emption the defendant is not prohibited from setting up a plea of estoppels in addition to a plea of denial of custom of pre-emption. A Hindu person claiming under a sale deed from a Hindu widow may support his claim by pleading that the widow separated during the life time of her husband and hence she was the owner of the property which she had sold to him, or in the alternative the widow was in possession for ever 12 years and thus became owner by adverse possession.

A defendant in money suit due on promissory note against him may plead that he did not execute the promissory note, and in the alternative the plaintiff claim is barred by the law of limitation. But it must be carefully borne in mind by the draftsman and separately be stated in the pleading.

The Court will not allow any such pleas on the ground covered by implication unless specifically set out. Thus, in a suit by a son to set aside certain transfers made by his mother on the ground of unsoundness of mind of his mother at the time or the transfer and further averred that the donee was residing with his mother and was completely under his dominion and control and the donee knew the mental condition of the donor.