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Understanding the statute of limitations for breach of contract

| Jun 2, 2020 | Contract Disputes |

When your business enters into an agreement with another business, you both have obligations you must uphold. Even if you make good on your end, the other business may not provide the services or goods they promised. In this case, their actions constitute a breach of contract. And while you may want to pursue recourse, abiding by statutes of limitations can create more confusion than clarity.

What are New York’s laws?

New York’s statute of limitations for contracts seem straightforward at first. By law, you can file a lawsuit against the breaching party up to six years after the date the incident took place. Some states abide by the discovery rule, where the window for filing a lawsuit begins the date the breach became apparent. But New York is not one of these states and has struck down cases argued on this premise.

Yet, there is an exception to this law if the breach of contract related to saleable goods or interstate commerce. The Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) sets the statute of limitations for such breaches. In these cases, you have four years after the date of the incident to pursue legal action against the breaching business.

What steps can I take?

The key to moving forward with a breach of contract lawsuit is to understand if it falls within New York’s statute of limitations or the UCC’s. Once you’re familiar with these laws, it’s crucial to file as fast as possible. An attorney with contract law experience can help you navigate the process and its complexities.

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