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Superior Court Civil Rules Table of Contents

RULES OF THE SUPERIOR COURT
OF THE STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

CIVIL RULES

III.  PLEADINGS AND MOTIONS

Rule 8. Complaint

(a)  Except as may be more specifically provided by these rules in respect of specific actions, a pleading which sets forth a claim for relief, whether an original claim, counterclaim, cross-claim or third-party claim, shall contain a statement of the material facts known to the pleading party on which the claim is based, showing that the pleader is entitled to relief, and a demand for judgment for the relief to which the pleader claims entitlement;  provided, however, that in any personal action a pleading shall not allege the amount of damages claimed, but shall state only that the damages claimed are within the jurisdictional limits of the court.  Relief in the alternative or of several different types may be demanded.

(b)  An amendment to a pleading relates back to the date of the original pleading when:

(1)  a statute that provides the applicable statute of limitations allows relation back;

(2)  the amendment asserts a claim or defense that arose out of the conduct, transaction or occurrence set out – or attempted to be set out – in the original pleading; or

(3) the amendment changes the party or the naming of the party against whom a claim is asserted, if Rule 8(b)(2) is satisfied and if, within the period provided for serving the summons and complaint, the party to be brought in by amendment:

(A) received such notice of the action that it will not be prejudiced in defending on the merits; and

(B) knew or should have known that the action would have been brought against it, but for a mistake or lack of information concerning the proper party’s identity.

(c)  A plaintiff entitled to a trial by jury and desiring a trial by jury shall so indicate upon the first page of the Complaint at the time of filing, or, if there is a counterclaim, at the time plaintiff files an Answer to such counterclaim.  Failure to request a jury trial in accordance with this rule shall constitute a waiver by the plaintiff thereof.


Comment


        Pleadings which notify the opposing party and the court of the factual and legal bases of the pleader’s claims or defenses better define the issues of fact and law to be adjudicated.  This definition should give the opposing party and the court sufficient information to determine whether the claim or defense is sufficient in law to merit continued litigation.  Pleadings should assist in setting practical limits on the scope of discovery and trial and should give the court sufficient information to control and supervise the progress of the case.

        The language following the proviso in section (a) of the rule is intended to conform to the requirements of RSA 508:4-c.
 

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