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What is the statute of limitations for an Oral contract under

Florida Civil Law, and what...
What is the statute of limitations for an Oral contract under Florida Civil Law, and what Statute of limitations specifies this?
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Answered in 3 minutes by:
10/14/2013
Tina
Tina, Lawyer
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Hello and welcome,

The statute of limitations for an oral contract is typically 4 years under Florida Limitations Statute 95.11(k).

Here is a link to the applicable statute:

http://www.leg.state.fl.us/Statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&Search_String=&URL=0000-0099/0095/Sections/0095.11.html


I hope this helps clarify the situation for you. My goal is to provide you with excellent service – if you feel you have received anything less, please reply back as I am happy to address follow-up questions. Kindly rate my service when I have answered your questions so I will be compensated for my time assisting you. Thank you!

Tina

Tina
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Customer reply replied 4 years ago

I'm sorry I didn't specify the circumstances to my question, but is that statute begun when the Breach occurs, or if it is an ongoing breach (repeated), would that begin when the 'last element" of the Tort was completed? (I'll be sure to credit you for both volleys. Michael)

Hello again, Michael.

No worries. The statute typically begins to run when the opposing party first breaches the contract. Where a continuing breach is involved, the statute may bar legal action being pursued for earlier breaches, but a suit for the more recent breaches may be viable if they have occurred within 4 years prior to the suit being filed.

I hope this helps clarify the situation for you. My goal is to provide you with excellent service – if you feel you have received anything less, please reply back as I am happy to address follow-up questions. Kindly rate my service when I have answered your questions so I will be compensated for my time assisting you. Thank you!

Tina

Tina
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Customer reply replied 4 years ago

Will do. I have to digest your second answer, though. Not sure how it might apply to my situation, as a Landlord breached an oral agreement he kept extending out, over and over as he exercised an unlawful lien on a third party my property was part of. A bankruptcy court later upheld his lien was unlawful. The third party was a corporation, but the oral agreement was with me over my pesonal property in the premises, and this dragged on for 15 months. The first agreement is over 4 years, but he kept repeating it throughout the time and changing the rules. Either way, there's a civil theft count on him that easily falls within the 5 years.

Did you agree to the extension for payment by the landlord?
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Customer reply replied 4 years ago

I'm not sure what you mean. I made a demand for my property repeatedly, and he kept saying when the company pays the back rent, he'd let operation (and return of my property) resume. When I made arrangements to pay the back rent, he added new charges; and this went on over and over on a month to month corporate lease. After seeing how he was being, I decided after the third month to liquidate property (equity I had in it) and pay him the existing back rent and move on. For perspective, the back rent was 2 months at $4K each. Had invested $70K in renovations five years earlier my lease allowed removing, but I agreed to leave behind if he'd let me get out of there for the back rent. He'd say yes, then change his mind. Other creditors I missed payments with as a result were moving to foreclose on the equipment (over $1M) for a mere $50K in debt. All frozen by this character, after he signed a waiver to the statutory lien rights. That waiver was upheld by Bankruptcy Court on an well argued adversarial hearing, he never appealed. I hope somewhere in this diatribe is your answer.

PS The Chapter 11 was soley to get the property out of the lien.

If someone is in breach of a contract but the parties agree to extend the due date to a later date, then the later date would typically be used to determine whether the 4 years has lapsed. This does not appear to be what occurred in your situation so I would expect a court to find that the claim is barred by the SOL at this point. I'm sorry, but I don't see anything in these facts which would provide a different result since the application SOL is usually strictly applied.

Tina
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Customer reply replied 4 years ago

Tina, do not be sorry. Your answer has only cleaned up my complaint, as I was trying to do. That's why I asked. There was repeated occurrances of the agreement that are within the 4 years, even discounting his breach of the original; so I can hinge to those with no problem, as I expected. Secondly, as I indicated, this is a Civil Theft with other Torts that occurred along the way, including Deceptive Acts and Practices; and as you know the Civil Theft is not contingent upon any agreement. The sums involved should justify Felonious Intent, but even that burden is not statute precluded. Thanks again. Michael

Customer reply replied 4 years ago

Tina, In reading your explanation above, and even taking my reply before it into consideration -- which I tried to summarize to its essence -- would not my capitulating to being held hostage qualify as being interpretted as extending the due date, or at least being extended because it was an ongoing tort where the last element constituting the breach didn't occur until a later date?

Hello again, Michael.

I would certainly argue that you agreed to extend the dates by your conduct or words even though there was not a written agreement to that effect.

I need more information with regard to your second question to have a better idea of where you are going with your arguments but generally if an element of a tort is not satisfied until a later date, I would typically expect a court to find that the cause of action accrued on that later date.

I hope this helps clarify the situation for you. My goal is to provide you with excellent service – if you feel you have received anything less, please reply back as I am happy to address follow-up questions. Kindly rate my service when I have answered your questions so I will be compensated for my time assisting you. Thank you!

Tina

Tina
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Customer reply replied 4 years ago

Thanks for such prompt reply. Would my asking a NEW question be better, and if so, how can I do it where you respond? (I don't want an extended volley to deny proper crediting for you, and I am not clear on how these questions work for the Expert.)

Customer reply replied 4 years ago

With regard to my second question, a landlord placed a lien on corporate property without filing a Motion for Distress or obtaining a Writ of Distress, and in violation to a separate agreement I commented on above. An individual's property was inside and was needed for providing income. The argument I am referring to is one of Civil Theft, Conversion and Unjust Enrichment that began with the Lien. The Civil Theft occured within 60 months of filing an action; but because the Civil Theft continued for 15 months of broken promises to be released, my argument is that all oral agreements made during that time, made AFTER the Lien (but outside 48 months) were part of ongoing Civil Theft, which is the same argument being made for Conversion and Unjust Enrichment, which like the Oral Agreement are constrained to 48 month SOL. The only reason anything was returned, was because of a Court Order 3 months after a Ch-11 Petition filing, forcing the Landlord to surrender the property; because he continued to hold it even after the bankruptcy filing. I might add that during these 15 months, he maintained constant communication with the individual who's property he held (President of the corp.), and repeatedly extorted more and more money demands as creditors began to go after him too, because of the waiver they were aware of. Big mess. All deceptive, all intentional. There's no issue on the Civil Theft being within the 60 month window, but the question is whether this deception and constant raising of his demands when each one was met qualifies for an ongoing Tort that didn't mature until the final damage was done, which IS within the four year SOL.

Hello again, Michael.

To post new question requesting me, please use the following link to post the question in the question box on my profile page:

http://www.justanswer.com/law/expert-tina/

This argument would be bolstered if you had some case law which supported tolling the statute of limitations because of your new agreements with the LL. This may take quite a few hours to locate a case or cases on point, but could be worth the time and expense if you locate precedent for the argument. It is beyond the scope of this forum, but a local paralegal or attorney should be able to assist you in searching for case law which could aid you in making this argument.
Tina
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