News & Insights

Knowing your limits – The limitation period

A limitation period is the period of time within which a party must bring a claim. If a claimant brings a claim out of time, the defendant can claim the defence of limitation and the claimant must then prove that the action arose within the limitation period.

There are different limitation periods for different types of action:

Cause of Action Limitation period When does the limitation   period start?
Contract 6 years Date of the breach
Tort for e.g. trespass 6 years Date when wrongful act committed
Negligence for e.g. professional negligence 6 years Date of negligent act
Personal Injury 3 years Date of negligent act or knowledge of act
Fraud 6 years Date when fraud discovered
Rent Arrears 6 years Date when rent became due
Product Liability Claim 10 years Date when product supplied


The above table is just an indication of the time limits and when the limitation period commences. The court’s application of the time limits can vary depending on the claimant’s knowledge of the act, when the claimant’s loss could have been reasonably discovered etc. Your solicitor can advise on the limitation period and if you are out of time, the option of agreeing an extension of the limitation period with your opponent.

For further information, please contact Richard Gordon at Foskett Marr Gadsby & Head LLP’s Loughton office on 01992 578 642.