“Justice delayed is justice denied.” – William E. Gladstone

According to statistics, there are over five crore court cases pending, with approximately 4.32 crore of those cases backlogged in lower courts. Justice is being delayed as a result of the backlog and daily new cases being brought in the lower courts. In order to minimize such loads on judiciary system, the provision of legal notice was introduced to the system so that if there is any possibility to settle the matter amicable outside to the court, it should be.

Also Read: Can Police Arrest Anyone or There Is Any Procedure to Arrest? Police Power to Arrest

What is Legal Notice?

Legal Notice is a formal communication to the opposite party outlining their situation in relation to the consideration upon which both parties engaged into any new or existing understanding or contract, such as a dispute over family property.

The goal or purpose of the Legal Notice is to inform the other Party about the disagreement and the sender’s (First Party) request for relief, either in the form of money or in some asset with value to the consideration of the transaction, along with a deadline or timeframe for resolution. Within the allotted time, the sender is free to file a lawsuit with the court that has jurisdiction over the matter in order to obtain remedy.

Legal Notice can be sent in the situation having different types of grounds seeking relief or solution outside the court, which are

  1. Property Disputes
  2. Contractual Breaches
  3. Personal Injuries
  4. Consumer Complaints.

The Provision of Legal Notice was brought to the legal framework to release the burden on Court where if the both the party can solve the issues amicably. If either party wants to prevent any legal complications, they might share their proposals after informing the other party of their grievance. The recipient or opposing party to whom the legal notice is issued has the chance to remedy the dispute by providing their own version after receiving the legal notice. The opposing party has two options: accept the claim and present a counter-offer to settle the dispute, or reject the claim and have the sender go to court and explain his or her situation in order to recover damages or losses.

Having said above, the expectation towards favorable outcome can be expected if the opposite party is also keen and understand the conflict. However generally it has been observed when there is conflict Legal Notice just become a practice to follow as per the guidelines of legal framework. It gives the leverage to the Sender/Party at the Court about the Sender intent that the party tried to resolve the issue however could not get any positive response from opposite party.

What are the Provisions of Law for Legal Notice?

The goal or purpose of the Legal Notice is to inform the other Party about the disagreement and the sender's (First Party) request for relief, either in the form of money or in some asset with value to the consideration of the transaction, along with a deadline or timeframe for resolution
Credit: Pexels

Legal notice is often made as the first step in starting a case that claims a loss. It has been designated as a crucial step in every legal process in numerous Acts. The following sections are emphasised to help you understand how the judiciary can take serious note of a person’s ignorance of a legal notice’s noncompliance.

The Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881

Under Section 138 of Negotiable Act, 1881 it is clearly guided to follow the procedure to send the legal notice to the defaulter or other party where the Cheque has been bounced. The Notice is required to be sent within 30 days of the cheque bounce and further expected the response within 15 days of the receipt of the said notice.

“Section 138 1. (b) the payee or the holder in due course of the cheque, as the case may be, makes a demand for the payment of the said amount of money by giving a notice in writing, to the drawer of the cheque, 20 [within thirty days] of the receipt of information by him from the bank regarding the return of the cheque as unpaid; and
(c) the drawer of such cheque fails to make the payment of the said amount of money to the payee or, as the case may be, to the holder in due course of the cheque, within fifteen days of the receipt of the said notice.

The Companies Act, 2013

The Companies Act of 1956, Section 434, makes it clear that the creditor must provide the company a legal notice before starting the process to wind up the company. The Legal Notice must include a demand for payment on the unpaid debt and must be delivered by registered mail to the company’s registered office.

Section 434. Company when deemed unable to pay its debts.
(1) A company shall be deemed to be unable to pay its debts-
(a) if a creditor, by assignment or otherwise, to whom the company is indebted in a sum exceeding five hundred rupees then due, has served on the company, by causing it to be delivered at its registered office, by registered post or otherwise, a demand under his hand requiring the company to pay the sum so due and the company has for three weeks thereafter neglected to pay the sum, or to secure or compound for it to the reasonable satisfaction of the creditor;”

The Arbitration And Conciliation Act, 1996

Under the The Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 it is clearly made important part to inform the other party about the initiation of Arbitration. The act has clear direction under Section 11 and Section 21 to inform the other party in formal way about the proceeding of Arbitration / to appoint the Arbitrator.

The Consumer Protection Act, 2019

Under the Above mentioned Act it is required to the send the legal Notice to the opposite party sharing the Cheque Bounce details along with the Bank reply stating reason of Cheque Bounce. The Party seek the claim along with the amount committed as per the given Cheque. If the Opposite Party doesn’t listen the predicament of the Complainant and refuse the claim, the Complainant may approach the forum seeking the justice.

The Code Of Civil Procedure, 1908

Until the problem is of an urgent nature or an immediate stay is necessary to prevent any Irreparable loss to the Petitioner, the legal notice must be sent to the opposing party in order to initiate any lawsuit under civil court. In the case of any government official, where a civil lawsuit has a basis for being filed in the discharge of that official’s obligation, it is clearly stated in Section 80 of The Code Of Civil Procedure, 1908, to the great importance of serving legal notice.

“80. Notice.— 6 [(1)] 7 [ Save as otherwise provided in sub-section (2), no suits 8 [shall be instituted] against the Government (including the Government of the State of Jammu and Kashmir)] or against a public officer in respect of any act purporting to be done by such public officer in his official capacity, until the expiration of two months next after notice in writing has been 9 [delivered to, or left at the office of—] (a) in the case of a suit against the Central Government, 10[except where it relates to a railway] a Secretary to that Government;  “

Above have been mentioned the requirement of Legal Notice before filing any legal suit or case to the court having jurisdiction of such matter. The purpose is very clear to avoid the litigation and further self and Court time in getting the justice.

Also Read: Eviction of Tenant I What are the 5 Grounds to Evict Tenant ?

What are the Important Points to Remember For Legal Notice Drafting?

Credit: Pexels

It is important to understand the fundamental form of a legal notice while writing one so that the intended message can be communicated accurately. The Legal Notice is the first communication in the matter, and it is regarded as formal and important. As you prepare your legal notice, consider the following crucial elements:

  1. The legal notice should contain the both the Parties (Sender /Receiver) name, description of Issues, and place of residence/office of the Opposite Party and self or Advocate appointed.
  2. The legal notice should mention the date when the cause of issue aroused.
  3. The notice should mention all the facts of issues from since inception and the grievances in details with proper events dates.
  4. The notice should mention the ignorance or willfully default of opposite party which caused the loss or carry loss to the sender.
  5. The Legal Notice also should carry the future course of action as per the law if the matter is not resolved in given timeframe as per the notice
  6. The Legal Notice must carry the stipulate time to respond by the other party which may varies if not prescribed as in case of Section 80 of CPC, 1908
  7. The copy of Legal Notice must be retained by the Sender or the Advocate appointed to attach or submit to the Court given own side that one has tried to settle the matter however the opposite party is not showing any interest.

Important Judgement on Legal Notice Requirement

The Hon’ble Court has given its version of the requirement of legal notice to be served before filing the suit on numerous occasions and during hearings. The provisions have been mentioned directly or indirectly in the above-mentioned Acts and other specialised issue laws. The following are some important decisions that share Legal Notice provisions:

State of Madras vs. C.P. Agencies (AIR 1960 SC 1309)

Hon’ble Supreme Court in this case clearly held that the legal notice requirement under Section 80 of the Code of Civil Procedure is mandatory and non-compliance with it will result in the dismissal of the suit.

“The very language of Section 80 makes it clear,–and it has been so held by the Judicial Committee in Bhagchand Dagdusa v. Secy. of State, which decision has been adopted by the same tribunal in many later cases–that Section 80 is express, explicit and mandatory and admits of no implications or exceptions. Section 80 peremptorily requires that no suit shall be filed against the Government or a public officer in respect of anything done in his official capacity until after the expiry of two months from the service of a notice in the manner therein prescribed stating the cause of action, the name, description and place of residence of the plaintiff and the reliefs which he claims. There is no dispute that the name, description and place of residence of the plaintiff and the reliefs claimed have been sufficiently stated in the notice”

Read Citation: The State Of Madras vs C.P. Agencies And Anr.


Legal Notice is the first official communication and is very important in proving one’s position to the court in terms of intent. It should be written with all potential outcomes in mind, such as what would happen if the other side wasn’t willing to fix the issue, the potential lengths to which they would go, etc. The Legal Notice that the Advocate will provide will include every legal consideration that won’t impact the case going forward. The Legal Notice must detail the prior discussions and difficulties the parties have encountered. The Legal Notice is the remedy, and if it is carefully drafted and used, the case can be resolved from the outset itself if the claim is unjustified or the other party does not agree with it.


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