I do not agree with the claim

You have received a summons to appear before the Subdistrict Court because a claim has been instituted against you. If you do not agree with the claim, you can submit a defence, in writing or orally.

Written defence

You can put forward a written defence or have someone do so on your behalf. The statement of defence and any appendices must be submitted twice. You can do this by sending the statement of defence by post to the court registry (the administrative office of the court), or by presenting it directly to court. The details of the court are included in the summons.

State the names of the parties and the hearing date at the start of your statement of defence. Make sure that your documents are filed with the Subdistrict Court's registry at least two days before the hearing date.

If that is not possible, it would be wise to attend the hearing and submit your statement of defence there.

Oral defence

Putting forward a written defence is preferable, particularly when the difference of opinion is complicated. The Registrar draws up a report of your defence, which is sent to you and the claimant. The claimant then has the opportunity to respond to your defence or the Subdistrict Court rules that both parties must appear to discuss the difference of opinion with the judge. You may also ask someone to put forward an oral defence on your behalf. This person must be in possession of a signed, written authorisation from you.

Assistance with defence

If you do not agree with the claim, assistance can be obtained from a lawyer, bailiff or other legal assistance provider. If you cannot pay for this, go to the Legal Services Counter for assistance. This office will give you free legal advice.

For the case not to go to court

If you do not wish the case to go to the Subdistrict Court, pay everything at least two days before the hearing date. The full amount is specified in the summons. This includes the costs of the summons itself and an amount for the representative ad litem’s fee. If you have any doubts about the full amount, contact us by telephone at +31 (0)88 730 34 00. We can be contacted on business days from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

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