1. The plaintiff may, at any time before receipt of the defendant’s defence, or after the receipt thereof before taking any other proceeding in the action (save any interlocutory application), by notice in writing in the Form No 20 in Appendix C, wholly discontinue his action against all or any of the defendants or withdraw any part or parts of his alleged cause of complaint, and thereupon he shall pay such defendant’s costs of the action, or, if the action be not wholly discontinued, the costs occasioned by the matter so withdrawn. Such costs shall be taxed. The plaintiff may, however, at any time prior to the setting down of any cause for trial wholly discontinue his action, with or without costs to be paid by any party, upon producing to the proper officer a consent in writing signed by all parties or by their solicitors and such costs (if any) shall be taxed. Such discontinuance or withdrawal, as the case may be, shall not be a defence to any subsequent action. Save as in this rule otherwise provided, it shall not be competent for the plaintiff to discontinue the action without leave of the court, but the court may before, or at, or after, the hearing or trial, upon such terms as to costs, and as to any other action, and otherwise, as may be just, order the action to be discontinued, or any part of the alleged cause of complaint to be struck out. The court may, in like manner, and with the like discretion as to terms, upon the application of a defendant, order the whole or any part of his alleged grounds of defence or counterclaim to be withdrawn or struck out, but it shall not be competent to a defendant to withdraw his defence, or any part thereof, without such leave.
2. When a cause has been entered for trial, it may be withdrawn by either plaintiff or defendant, upon producing to the proper officer a consent in writing signed by the parties or by their solicitors. The consent shall include the list number and trial venue of the case.
3. Any defendant may enter judgment for the costs of the action, if it is wholly discontinued against him, or for the costs occasioned by the matter withdrawn, if the action be not wholly discontinued, in case such respective costs are not paid within four days after taxation.
4. If any subsequent action shall be brought before payment of the costs of a discontinued action, for the same, or substantially the same, cause of action, the court may order a stay of such subsequent action, until such costs shall have been paid.