Statute of Limitations – What is this? 

This legal doctrine, present in many legal systems around the world, sets a time limit within which legal proceedings must be initiated for a particular type of claim. As a result, the statute of limitations balances the interests of both plaintiffs and defendants, ensuring that cases are resolved efficiently while preserving the integrity of evidence and testimony.

At it’s core it serves two primary purposes fairness and practically.

Fairness – Over time, memories fade, evidence degrades, and witnesses become unavailable.

Practicality – Legal systems are inundated with cases, and resources are limited. Allowing claims to be filed without constraint would lead to an overwhelming backlog of cases.

The specifics of the statute of limitations vary widely across jurisdictions and types of cases, including civil and criminal.

Different time limits are assigned depending on the severity and nature of the offense or claim.

While the statute of limitations is essential for maintaining an efficient legal process, it is not without criticism. Some argue that it might hinder justice in cases where victims are unable to come forward promptly due to trauma or other factors.