Generally, the people who are having some legal conflicts require a few solid preventive measures if there are chances of any type of loss in the matter. A pre-warning or a notice can be relatively beneficial in such matters, and one such way for prevention is filing a Caveat Petition in the court. A Caveat is a warning or a caution given by a person to the court not to take any legal action or grant relief to the other side. This Caveat petition is described as the defensive measure taken by an individual who has an excessive fear or uneasiness that some of the other cases counter to the person are going to be filed in the court, linked to any legal matter. It is explained under Section 148A of Civil Procedure Code 1908. The word Caveat is a commonly used Latin phrase, originated in the mid-16th century, which means “let a person be aware”. It is considered as a formal notice where the person is always intimated before any type of legal action is taken against him or her. And by doing this, the person who has filed the caveat petition is ensuring that the court will hold a reasonable hearing before taking any decision engaged against the person.

This petition protects the interest of the Caveator, and a caveator can be a person by whom the Caveat has been lodged. This person should be ready to confront the proceedings which are expected to applied by the opponent, affording an opportunity to be heard by the court, before an ex-parte order is made. An ex-parte order is done with respect to or in the interests of one side only. Caveat is similarly utilized to avoid the multiplicity of the legal proceedings, so as to save the costs and other conveniences of the court. In the Civil Procedure Code of 1908 (CPC), it was inserted under section 148A by the recommendations of the Law Commission of India’s 54th Report and was inserted by the CPC Amendment Act 104. This section talks in brief about the caveat petition, with the precautionary measures generally undertaken by people when they are having a relatively strong apprehension that some case is going to be filed. Along with the precautionary measures, it is crucial to know the mandatory clauses which should be considered while filing the Caveat.

Basic Clauses of the Caveat Petition Section:

1. Circumstances in which Caveat petition can be launched:

  • When a person claims a right to appear before the court
  • Where an application is expected to be made
  • Where an application has already been made
  • In a suit or legal proceeding instituted
  • In a suit or proceeding which is about to be instituted
  • This clause is substantive in nature

2. Duties of the Caveator:

  • To serve a notice of the Caveat by registered post, acknowledgment due
  • On the person by whom the application has been made
  • On the person by whom the application is expected to be made

3. Duty of Court:

  • After a caveat has been lodged under clause 1, if any application is filed in any suit or proceeding, the court shall serve a notice of the application on the Caveator.
  • This clause is mandatory in nature

4. Duties of the Caveat Applicant:

  • Where a notice of any Caveat has been served on the applicant, he or she shall furnish, at the expense of the Caveator,
  • A copy of the application made by him or her
  • Copies of any paper or document which has been filed by him or her in support of the application.
  • Copies of any paper or document which may be filed by him or her in support of the application.
  • This clause is directive in nature.

5. life of a Caveat Petition:

  • The life of the caveat petition is 90 days, from the date on which it was lodged.
  • The only exception in this matter occurs if the application already exists, or has been made before the said period, the clause ceases to exist.

These 5 petition clauses are significant while a Caveat petition is being launched and they should be mandatorily followed by the parties. There have been many cases in which the Caveat petition has performed a crucial role and one of the most vital and memorable cases related to the caveat petition ensued with the central monetary body, the Reserve Bank of India. The Reserve Bank of India Employees Association and Anr. stood against the Reserve Bank of India and Ors. In this case, the appellants filed a caveat, apprehending an application that may be filed by the respondent in the matter. This was a revision petition under section 115 of the Code. The application was for a grant, against warning them from holding any meeting or, staging any demonstration or resorting to any other form of direct action or playing musical instruments, beating of drums, using microphones, and many other things, within the premises of the Reserve Bank of India, Hyderabad branch. The caveat petition seems crucial when there is a need of attentiveness to take action or allow release to the other party without providing notice to the caveator and without dealing with the opportunity of hearing an individual.