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Rules Which Tend to Produce Singleness or Unity in the Issue Rule I Pleadings Must Not Be Double


RULES WHICH TEND TO PRODUCE SINGLENESS OR UNITY IN THE ISSUE RULE I. PLEADINGS MUST NOT BE DOUBLE. The first rule tending to produce single ness or unity of the issue is, that pleadings must not be 'double.

With respect to the declaration. this rule means that the declaration must not, in support of a single de mand, allege several distinct matters, by any one of which that demand is sufficiently supported. With re spect to the subsequent pleadings, none of them is to Contain several distinct answers to that which preceded it. The reason in both cases is that such pleading tends to several issues concerning a single claim. The rule in terms prohibits only doubleness or duplicity, but it will include multiplicity also. The purpose of the rule is to secure a single issue upon a single subject of claim or defense. The declaration may, therefore, in support of several demands, allege as many distinct matters as are respectively applicable to each. And the plea may make distinct answers to such parts of the declaration as relate to different matters of claims or complaints. Likewise in the replication and subse quent pleadings. But the power of alleging in a plea distinct matters in answer to such parts of the declara tion as relate to different claims, seems to be subject to this restriction,—that none of the matters alleged be such as would alone be a sufficient answer to the whole.

If there be two or more defendants the rule against duplicity is not carried to the extent to compel each of them to make the same answer to the declaration. The defendants may either join in the same plea, or sever, at their discretion. But if they have united in the plea, they cannot sever at the rejoinder or other later stage of the pleading. A pleading that contains several answers is double, even though the answers be of different 'classes. Matter rnay suffice to make a pleading double, even though it be ill-pleaded. But matter purely immaterial cannot make a pleading dou ble. The purely immaterial matter is surplusage and may be stricken out, no issue can be taken upon it, and it therefore does not tend to prevent singleness of is sue. Nor will matter pleaded only as necessary in ducement to another allegation operate to make a pleading double. No matters, however multifarious,will operate to make a pleading double, if, taken together, they constitute but 01le connected proposition or entire point. This applies not only to pleas in confession and avoidance, but to traverse also, so that a man may deny a.s well as affirm, any number of circumstances that to gether form but a sing,le point or proposition. A tra verse of several matters thus connected is called a cu mulative traverse. But if the matters so connected re quire when separate, some to be traversed by one spe cies of traverse, and some by another, then a cumula tive traverse seems to be improper.

A protestation does not make a pleading double, since it does not tend to an issue, but merely saves to the party the right of denying, in a future suit, be tween the same parties, the matter admitted in the pres ent suit.

Where a plaintiff has several distinct causes of ac tion, he is allowed to pursue them cumulatively in the same original writ, provided they conform to certain rules which the law prescribes as to joining only such demands as are of a similar quality or character. Such different claims or complaints constitute different parts or sections of the declaration, and are known in pleading by the designation of counts.

pleading, matters, distinct, single and declaration