Limitation of liability is a time-limit of when a party can raise a claim. Limitation periods are provided for in the Limitation Act 1980, although parties can agree in a contract that a shorter or longer limitation period will apply. The policy behind limitation is that claims should be litigated only during the liability period for the professional involved, after which he can no longer be held responsible for potential issues arising.
The Latent Damage Act 1986 amended the Limitation Act and inserted section 14A which provides for a longer limitation period running from the date of knowledge.
|Contract type||Standard period||Latent|
|Under Hand (Simple Contract)||6 years (1)
(from the date on which the cause of action accrued / section 5)
|Under Seal (Deed)||12 years (1)
(from the date on which the cause of action accrued / section 8)
|Tort||6 years (1)
(from the date on which the cause of action accrued / section 2)
|Negligence||3 years (1)
(from the date of knowledge if the three year period expires more than the six years after accrual of the cause of action / section 14A)
|Breach of contract||6 years|
|Claims of libel, slander or malicious falsehood||1 year|
|Actions about Personal Injury||3 years
(from the date at which the cause of action accrued OR the date at which the person injured knew that they were injured)