Civil Procedure Code & Limitation Act LSF – 3

Answer to Question: Set Off (Order 8 of the Civil Procedure Code)

I. Introduction to Set Off

Set Off, as detailed in Order 8 of the Civil Procedure Code (CPC), is a legal mechanism used in civil litigation. It allows the defendant to counterclaim against the plaintiff’s demand, offsetting the plaintiff’s claims with claims of their own.

II. Concept and Provisions of Set Off (Order 8)

A. Legal Basis: Set Off is a procedural tool provided under Order 8 of the CPC, allowing a defendant to claim a set off against the plaintiff’s suit.

B. Conditions for Set Off:

  1. Monetary Claim: The claim by the defendant must be for a certain sum of money.
  2. Legally Recoverable: The amount claimed as set off must be legally recoverable.
  3. Same Transaction or Connected: The claim for set off should arise from the same transaction or should be connected with the subject matter of the suit.
  4. No Bar by Law: The set off should not be barred by any law.

C. Procedure for Claiming Set Off:

  1. Written Statement: The defendant must assert the set off claim in their written statement.
  2. Details of Claim: The claim must specify the amount and particulars of the debt sought to be set off.
  3. Time of Suit: The claim for set off must have been legally recoverable at the time of filing the suit.

D. Effect of Set Off:

  1. Reduction of Plaintiff’s Recovery: If the set off is allowed, it reduces the amount recoverable by the plaintiff.
  2. Independent Relief: A successful set off operates as an independent relief to the defendant.

III. Conclusion

In summary, Set Off under Order 8 of the CPC is a legal provision that enables a defendant to counterbalance the plaintiff’s claims with their own claims, provided these claims meet specific conditions such as being for a certain sum of money, arising from the same transaction, and being legally recoverable. This procedural tool plays a significant role in civil litigation, allowing for the efficient resolution of interconnected claims between the parties involved​​.