To help solicitors keep on top of prescriptive time limits, Lockton has commissioned this guide to the prescriptive period which applies in civil damages claims for reparation for breach of contract and duty, known as short negative prescription.

Missed time-bars are a common cause of claims under the Master Policy, so caution should be exercised whenever prescription is likely to play a part in an instruction. Solicitors should try to determine the earliest that the prescriptive clock could be argued to have begun running and discuss with their client raising protective proceedings to keep on the right side of any such deadline. This guide is intended to assist solicitors in their consideration of when the prescriptive period will be considered to have begun.

The guide has been produced for Lockton as a general guide to short negative prescription in cases where that is the relevant prescriptive period. It does not cover other types of claim, such as for personal injury. It is not legal advice and may not be relied upon.