State Codes and Statutes

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > North-carolina > Chapter_1A > GS_1A-1__Rule_8

Rule 8. General rules ofpleadings.

(a)        Claims for relief.– A pleading which sets forth a claim for relief, whether an original claim,counterclaim, crossclaim, or third‑party claim shall contain

(1)        A short and plainstatement of the claim sufficiently particular to give the court and theparties notice of the transactions, occurrences, or series of transactions oroccurrences, intended to be proved showing that the pleader is entitled torelief, and

(2)        A demand forjudgment for the relief to which he deems himself entitled. Relief in thealternative or of several different types may be demanded. In all negligenceactions, and in all claims for punitive damages in any civil action, whereinthe matter in controversy exceeds the sum or value of ten thousand dollars($10,000), the pleading shall not state the demand for monetary relief, butshall state that the relief demanded is for damages incurred or to be incurredin excess of ten thousand dollars ($10,000). However, at any time after serviceof the claim for relief, any party may request of the claimant a writtenstatement of the monetary relief sought, and the claimant shall, within 30 daysafter such service, provide such statement, which shall not be filed with theclerk until the action has been called for trial or entry of default entered.Such statement may be amended in the manner and at times as provided by Rule15.

(b)        Defenses; form ofdenials. – A party shall state in short and plain terms his defenses to eachclaim asserted and shall admit or deny the averments upon which the adverseparty relies. If he is without knowledge or information sufficient to form abelief as to the truth of an averment, he shall so state and this has theeffect of a denial. Denials shall fairly meet the substance of the avermentsdenied. When a pleader intends in good faith to deny only a part of or aqualification of an averment, he shall specify so much of it as is true andmaterial and shall deny only the remainder. Unless the pleader intends in goodfaith to controvert all the averments of the preceding pleading, he may makehis denials as specific denials of designated averments or paragraphs, or hemay generally deny all the averments except such designated averments orparagraphs as he expressly admits; but, when he does so intend to controvertall its averments, he may do so by general denial subject to the obligationsset forth in Rule 11.

(c)        Affirmativedefenses. – In pleading to a preceding pleading, a party shall set forthaffirmatively accord and satisfaction, arbitration and award, assumption ofrisk, contributory negligence, discharge in bankruptcy, duress, estoppel,failure of consideration, fraud, illegality, injury by fellow servant, laches,license, payment, release, res judicata, statute of frauds, statute oflimitations, truth in actions for defamation, usury, waiver, and any othermatter constituting an avoidance or affirmative defense. Such pleading shallcontain a short and plain statement of any matter constituting an avoidance oraffirmative defense sufficiently particular to give the court and the partiesnotice of the transactions, occurrences, or series of transactions oroccurrences, intended to be proved. When a party has mistakenly designated adefense as a counterclaim or a counterclaim as a defense, the court, on terms,if justice so requires, shall treat the pleading as if there had been a properdesignation.

(d)        Effect of failureto deny. – Averments in a pleading to which a responsive pleading is required,other than those as to the amount of damage, are admitted when not denied inthe responsive pleading. Averments in a pleading to which no responsivepleading is required or permitted shall be taken as denied or avoided.

(e)        Pleading to beconcise and direct; consistency. –

(1)        Each averment of apleading shall be simple, concise, and direct. No technical forms of pleadingor motions are required.

(2)        A party may setforth two or more statements of a claim or defense alternatively orhypothetically, either in one count  or defense or in separate counts ordefenses. When two or more statements are made in the alternative and one ofthem if made independently would be sufficient, the pleading is not madeinsufficient by the insufficiency of one or more of the alternative statements.A party may also state as many separate claims or defenses as he has regardlessof consistency and whether based on legal or on equitable grounds or on both.All statements shall be made subject to the obligations set forth in Rule 11.

(f)         Construction ofpleadings. – All pleadings shall be so construed as to do substantial justice. (1967,c. 954, s. 1; 1975, 2nd Sess., c. 977, s. 5; 1979, ch. 654, s. 4; 1985 (Reg.Sess., 1986), c. 1027, s. 56; 1989 (Reg. Sess., 1990), c. 995, s. 1.)