Whenever the plaintiff brings a suit for money and the defendant who had some earlier liability from the plaintiff had already partly discharged the money, or the plaintiff has a liability to the defendant for a certain sum of money, the defendant can state by way of his written statement to set off the claim.
The law regarding set-off is dealt with under Order 8 Rule 6 of the Civil Procedure Code. As per the law laid down in Rule 6 of Order 8 the different conditions or elements of the claim of set off and its effects can be enlisted as follows:
1. The plaintiff should bring a money suit or there should have a claim for money against the defendant.
2. The defendant has to file a written statement at the first hearing or with permission of the Court at a later stage.
3. The amount has to be an ascertained sum of money.
4. The amount has to be one which is legally recoverable from the plaintiff.
5. The amount must not exceed the pecuniary limits of the jurisdiction of the Court.
6. Both the parties must fill in the same character.(Illustration a of CPC)
Effect of Set Off
The law relating to the effect of set off is laid down under Sub Rule 2 and 3 of Order 8 Rule 6. The written statement with a claim for set off shall have the same effect as a plaint in a cross-suit. The rules relating to a written statement applies to a written statement in answer to a claim of set-off.