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LIMITATION ACT, 1963

Title : LIMITATION ACT, 1963

Year : 1963



(1) Subject to the provisions contained in sections 4 to 24 (inclusive), every suit instituted, appeal preferred, and application made after the prescribed period shall be dismissed although limitation has not been set up as a defence.

(2) For the purposes of this Act-

(a) A suit is instituted-

(i) In an ordinary case, when the plaint is presented to the proper officer;

(ii) In the case of a pauper, when his application for leave to sue as a pauper is made; and

(iii) In the case of a claim against a company which is being wound up by the court, when the claimant first sends in his claim to the official liquidator;

(b) Any claim by way of a set off or a counter claim, shall be treated as a separate suit and shall be deemed to have been instituted-

(i) In the case of a set off, on the same date as the suit in which the set off is pleaded;

(ii) In the case of a counter claim, on the date on which the counter claim is made in court;

(c) An application by notice of motion in a High Court is made when the application is presented to the proper officer of that court.



Where the prescribed period for any suit, appeal or application expires on a day when the court is closed, the suit, appeal or application may be instituted, preferred or made on the date when the court reopens.

Explanation: A court shall be deemed to be closed on any day within the meaning of this section if during any part of its normal working hours it remains closed on that day.



Any appeal or any application, other than an application under any of the provisions of Order XXI of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, may be, admitted after the prescribed period, if the appellant or the applicant satisfies the court that he had sufficient cause for not preferring the appeal or making the application within such period.

Explanation: The fact that the appellant or the applicant was misled by any order, practice or judgement of the High Court in ascertaining or computing the prescribed period may be sufficient cause within the meaning of this section.



(1) Where a person entitled to institute a suit or make an application for the execution of a decree, is at the time from which the prescribed period is to be reckoned, a minor or insane, or an idiot, he may institute the suit or make the application within the same period after the disability has ceased, as would otherwise have been allowed from the time specified therefor in the third column of the Schedule.

(2) Where such person is, at the time from which the prescribed period is to be reckoned, affected by two such disabilities, or where, before his disability has ceased, he is affected by another disability, he may institute the suit or make the application within the same period after both disabilities have ceased, as would otherwise have been allowed from the times so specified.

(3) Where the disability continues up to the death of that person, his legal representative may institute the suit or make the application within the same period after the death, as would otherwise have been allowed from the time so specified.

(4) Where the legal representative referred to in sub-section (3) is, at the date of the death of the person whom he represents, affected by any such disability, the rules contained in sub-sections (1) and (2) shall apply.

(5) Where a person under disability dies after the disability ceases but within the period allowed to him under this section, his legal representative may institute the suit or make the application within the same period after the death, as would otherwise have been available to that person had he not died.

Explanation
: For the purposes of this section minor includes a child in the womb.



Where one of several persons jointly entitled to institute a suit or make an application for the execution of a decree is under any such disability, and a discharge can be given without the concurrence of such person, time will run against them all; but, where no such discharge can be given, time will not run as against any of them until one of them becomes capable of giving such discharge without the concurrence of the others or until the disability has ceased.

Explanation I : This section applies to a discharge from every kind of liability, including a liability in respect of any immovable property.

Explanation II: For the purposes of this section, the manager of a Hindu undivided family governed by the Mitakshara law shall be deemed to be capable of giving a discharge without the concurrence of the other members of the family only if he is in management of the joint family property.



Nothing in section 6 or in section 7 applies to suits to enforce rights of pre-emption, or shall be deemed to extend, for more than three years from the cessation of the disability or the death of the person affected thereby, the period of limitation for any suit or application.



Where once time has begun to run, no subsequent disability or inability to institute a suit or make an application stops it:

PROVIDED that where letters of administration to the estate of creditor have been granted to his debtor, the running of the period of limitation for a suit to recover the debt shall be suspended while the administration continues.



Notwithstanding anything contained in the foregoing provisions of this Act, no suit against a person in whom property has become vested in trust for any specific purpose, or against his legal representatives or assigns (not being assigns for valuable consideration), for the purpose of following in his or their hands such property, or the proceeds thereof, or for an account of such property or proceeds, shall be barred by any length of time.

Explanation
: For the purposes of this section any property comprised in a Hindu, Muslim or Buddhist religious or charitable endowment shall be deemed to be property vested in trust for a specific purpose and the manager of the property shall be deemed to be the trustee thereof.



(1) Suits instituted in the territories to which this Act extends on contracts entered into in the State of Jammu and Kashmir or in a foreign country shall be subject to the rules of limitation contained in this Act.

(2) No rule of limitation in force in the State of Jammu and Kashmir or in a foreign country shall be a defence to a suit instituted in the said territories on a contract entered into in that State or in a foreign country unless-

(a) The rule has extinguished the contract; and

(b) The parties were domiciled in that State or in the foreign country during the period prescribed by such rule.
Last updated on June, 2016

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