Are there any limitation periods for commencing disputes in your jurisdiction?

Construction

Norway Small Flag Norway

In regard to claims, the Norwegian Limitation Act of 1979 sets a general limitation period of three years for commencing disputes. The limitation period start to run when the creditor first had the right to demand performance. If the claim has not been made because the creditor did not know of the claim, there is a supplementary limitation period of one year from the date the creditor obtained or should have obtained such knowledge. The maximum limitation period is ten years.

For construction and engineering disputes, the NS contracts provide that the contractor must initiate litigation or arbitration proceedings within eight months after take-over of the contract work.

Sweden Small Flag Sweden

No, not when it comes to construction contract claims. However, the general statutory limitation period (see above) or limitations under the parties’ contract may limit a party’s right to bring a claim.

Hong Kong Small Flag Hong Kong

Yes. Under s.4 of the Limitation Ordinance (Cap. 347), a party must bring a claim for breach of contract within six years (for contracts not executed under seal), or twelve years (for contracts executed under seal), from the date on which the cause of action accrued, being the date of the breach.
For actions in tort (such as claims for negligence), a party must bring an action within six years from the date the cause of action accrued, subject to exceptions. Notably, this limit is extended where the plaintiff discovered the cause of action after the date that it accrued, which is particularly important where an employer wishes to claim for latent defects. Specifically, a plaintiff may bring an action within three years from the earliest date that it had both the required knowledge and the right to bring the action. This exception is subject to a longstop which bars claims brought more than 15 years after the date of the alleged negligent act or omission (Limitation Ordinance ss.31 and 32).

United Kingdom Small Flag United Kingdom

Yes. The Limitation Act 1980 specifies that for an action arising in contract, the limitation period starts at the date of breach and runs for 6 years for a simple contract and 12 years for a deed. Contracts in the industry are usually signed as deeds to take advantage of this extended period. The date of breach is typically taken as the date of practical completion for contractors.

For actions arising in tort, the limitation period is 6 years and runs from the date of damage. However, special rules arise in relation to latent damage (i.e. where the damage is not known to the parties at the date it occurs). In those circumstances, the tortious limitation period may be extended to three years from the date that the damage was (or ought to have been) discovered. This is subject to a longstop date of 15 years from the date of the negligent act.

Different provisions apply to personal injury claims.

United States Small Flag United States

State law governs the limitation period for commencing a construction dispute in the United States As a result, the time limitations for commencing construction claims vary from state to state. Construction professionals must be aware of the specific statutory limitation periods for bringing a claim in each state in which work is performed. Failure to commence a dispute within the time permitted will forever bar the claim.

In addition, some states allow parties to modify certain limitations periods by contract. For example, certain AIA Form Contracts set the time period within which a party may bring a claim for defective construction. Courts in some states, such as California and Illinois, have ruled that contractual limitations periods are enforceable. Construction professionals operating in the United States should be mindful of their ability to curtail the uncertainty of claims by contractually reducing the limitations period for asserting claims.

Serbia Small Flag Serbia

Yes, there are. Pending to the specific legal action and claim undertaken the law provides different time bars to commence legal proceedings and to be granted with the judgment.

Updated: April 24, 2018