Caveat Petition under Civil Procedure Code

Caveat Petition under Civil Procedure Code

The caveat petition can be filed under section 148A of civil procedure code 1908. The caveat is a Latin term which means let a person be aware. A caveat petition follows the rule of Audi Alteram Partem and it can be filed by any person who thinks that any person has filed or is about to file civil litigation against him. 

A caveat petition is different from a legal notice. A caveat petition acts as a precautionary measure taken by a person against an expected case against him whereas a legal notice acts as a warning to the opposite party from a person who is willing to take legal action against that party.

The caveat petition gives the right of a person to be heard before giving any decision against him. No court can give the decision or pass the order like stay order etc. against the person without listening to his side.

Caveat Petition Meaning

A caveat petition is a petition which is filed by the caveator in which he gives the instructions to the court that no decision or order should be passed by the court against him without giving him a proper notice or right to be heard in that matter. 

In simple words, it can be understood as a notice given to the court asking not to act in a given matter in the caveat petition without informing the caveator.

Parties under caveat petition

There are only two parties under the caveat petition which are the caveator and caveatee.

Caveator

A person who has filed the caveat petition in the court that person is known as a caveator. 

Caveatee

A person who has filed the suit in the court or is likely to file the litigation against the caveator is known as a caveatee.

Key points of caveat petition

  • The court cannot pass any order without informing the caveator
  • It saves the right of the caveator to be heard before the court of law
  • The limitation period of a caveator petition is 3 months (90 days).
  • The court is liable to inform the caveator if any e civil petition has been filed against him related to the matter given under the petition.
  • Any order or judgment passed by the court against the caveator without information will become unenforceable by law.
  • It is important for the caveator to send a copy of the caveat petition to the opposite party through the registered post.
  • After the expiry of 90 days, the court is not binding to inform the caveator.
  • The caveator can file a fresh petition after the expiry period of 90 days.
  • The caveat petition cannot be filed against criminal proceedings for writ petition under Article 226 of the constitution of India.

The objective of caveat petition

The objective of a caveat petition is to allow every person to be heard in the court so that the person can tell his side in front of the court. Any person can file a caveat petition to protect his rights or to stop the ex parte order. 

The caveat petition ensures that the code does not pass any degree against the caveator which will violate his right.

In the case of Nirmal Chand vs Girindra Narayan, the Supreme Court of India has defined a caveat as a warning given by the caveator to the court that no judgment or order should be passed against the caveator without giving him notice or opportunity to be heard in the court. 

When can a person file a caveat petition?

According to section 148A of the civil procedure code any person can file the caveat petition in the following situations:

  • When an individual apprehends that an individual has filed a case against him in any Court of law.
  • When an individual apprehends that an individual is about to file a case against him in any Court of law.

In both the given situations, a person can file a caveat petition in court.

Where can a caveat petition be filed?

The caveat petition can be considered as anticipatory notice by a person against the legal proceedings. He can file this petition in any

Here, the civil courts include all the courts of small causes, tribunals, forums and commissions.

It means the person has the right to file a caveat petition in any Court. 

Filing of caveat petition

There is a prescribed form is it created for the filing of a caveat petition which consists of:

  • Name of the court in which the caveat petition is filed
  • If there is any suit or petition or appeal has been filed, the number of that appeal or suit.
  • The name and address of the person who is filing the caveat petition
  • The name and addresses of the opposite party
  • Full detail of the matter on which the caveat petition is filed.
  • If the caveat petition is being filled in case of appeal or writ petition, then the person should also attach the copy of that decision against he thinks that the opposite party can file for appeal for writ petition.
  • One copy of a Vakalatnama is attached with the cavity preparation application
  • After filing the caveat petition in the court, the caveator must serve the notice of the caveat to the opposite party by registered post.

After filing the caveat petition in the court, whenever the opposite party files a case, appeal or writ petition related to the matter given under the caveat petition, the court will inform the person who has filed the caveat petition. The court does not pass any order without hearing the person who has filed the caveat petition. 

Duties of the court for caveat petition

When a person files the caveat petition in the court, the code may or may not accept the petition by giving specific reasons. But if the court accepts the caveat petition, it becomes the duty of the court to inform the caveator when a case is filed against him. Under this petition it is not the discretionary power of the court that the Court may or may not inform the caveator, the court has to inform the caveator if any case is filed against him.

But after the expiry of 90 days, the court will no longer be liable to inform the caveator of a case file against him.

The limitation period of caveat petition

The provisions related to the limitation period of the caveat petition is given under section 148 (a) (5). According to this section, the limitation period of the caveat petition is 90 days. After the expiry of 90 days, the caveat petition will be dismissed. 

But in a situation where the caveator thinks that the opposite party can file an appeal, litigation or writ petition related to the same matter, then the caveator has to file another caveat petition. The limitation period for such a petition will also remain for 90 days. 

Advantages of filing a caveat petition

There are the following benefits of a caveat petition:

  • The court cannot pass the ex parte order against the caveator
  • It saves the expenses of the caveator
  • Any order passed by the court against the caveator without informing him will become unenforceable.

Can any person file a caveat petition? 

According to the rules related to the caveat petition given under the civil procedure code, any person who is a party in the suit or not a party in the suit can file the caveat petition. But the caveator must have the legal right related to that case. He has to give the reasons in the court that if a person gets the ex parte decree, then how his rights will be affected. 

In simple words, in a case where a person does not have any legal rights, cannot file the caveat petition in the court.

Any third party can also file a caveat petition in the court if the party is connected to the suit in any manner.

For example, in any case between landlord and tenant, the subtenant can also file the caveat petition because any decision given by the court, in that case, will also affect his rights. 

In the case of Kattil Vayalil vs. Mannil Peedikayil, the court held that a person who has no right in the proceedings cannot file the caveat petition. 

Difference between caveat petition and legal notice

caveat petition vS legal notice

S NO.Caveat PetitionLegal Notice
1The person files the caveat petition when heat is that a suit has been filed or going to file against him in court.The legal notice is issued by a person who faces some loss due to the opposite party and he is now intending to file the litigation.
2It contains the information related to the matter in which the caveator thinks that he might face a case against him.The legal notice consists of the statement of a plaintiff who faced loss due to the opposite party and seeking relief.
3The cavitation acts as a precautionary measure taken by the caveator.Legal notice works as a warning to the opposite party.
4A caveat petition is filed by a caveator in the court.The legal notice is directly served by the person to the opposite party by post or any other means.
5The limitation of the caveat petition is only 90 days from the filing in the court of law.The legal notice specifies its limitation period within which the opposite party has to answer to overcompensate the aggrieved party. 

FAQ Related to Caveat Petition

Who can file a Caveat petition?

The caveat petition can be filed by any person whose right will be affected if the court passed the decree in the matter given under the caveat petition

What is the limitation of a caveat petition?

The limitation period of a caveat petition is only 90 days from the date of filing. The court must inform the caveator if any e suit is filed against him within these 90 days.

Can a caveat petition be filed against criminal proceedings?

No, in the case of Deepak Khosla Vs Union of India and others, the court held that the caveat petition deals with civil proceedings only. It cannot be made against criminal proceedings. 

Conclusion

A caveat petition is a right of a defendant by which the court cannot give any order or decision against him without giving him notice or listening to his side. This petition anticipates the person and protects his right to be heard in a court of law. If you have any suggestions regarding our article, please comment below.

The caveat petition pdf copy is taken from:

http://www.delhihighcourt.nic.in/writereaddata/upload/Downloads/DownloadFile_KUD67PSJ.PDF

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