That’s right, as happens for many crimes so debts can also be time-barred. If you are a creditor and need to collect the money due to you, you should read the rest of this document carefully and be able to pay the amount due.
If you are a creditor of a sum against someone you must exercise the right to demand payment in a predetermined period of time identified by the law. Only then can you be sure that your money is paid out.
After the statutory deadline for receiving the money due without having applied for it, the debtor can use the prescription and no longer be forced to pay. So there will be very little you can do to put the debtor under pressure and get paid.
But what is the prescription?
The law establishes that every right is extinguished by prescription, when the owner does not exercise for the time determined by the law itself. Let’s take a practical example.
If you need to receive a € 100 payment from someone, you have the right to do so within 10 years. At the end of this period, if you have not requested payment, then you will not have anything to claim.
Again by law, not all rights are subject to the statute of limitations. There are particular cases where there are no time limits , let’s see some:
- The property
- The actions of recognition of inheritance
- Dispute of paternity
- Branch recognition
- Questions of division of the heirs
Debt prescription: how does it work?
As in the example above, the ordinary prescription is just 10 years. This provision is valid for all those credits for which the law does not provide otherwise. Then there are some types of credits for which the short prescription of 5 years exists.
Finally, there is also the presumptive prescription , ie the law assumes that the debt has been paid within a given term, ranging from 6 months to a year. In this case the burden of proof of non-payment is borne by the creditor.
Here are two general rules that can be taken into consideration:
- 10-year prescription: when the debt derives from contracts or unlawful acts.
- Prescription in 5 years; when the debt derives from unlawful acts (such as damage caused to a local)
How to calculate the debit limitation?
The countdown for the statute of limitations starts from the moment in which the creditor can claim his right to be paid and ends at midnight on the last day. The days must therefore be counted, therefore including the holidays excluding only the day on which the prescription begins .
In order to calculate the prescription it is essential to make the distinction between the debt and the payment card. The limitation period depends on the debt and not on the file. However, depending on the credit shown in the folder, the prescription time changes.
Some examples of a debt limitation period
The 10-year prescription time is typical of all debt ratios derived from a contract or unilateral obligation, as in the case of promises of payment.
Instead, as regards the 5-year prescription, we can include the rents of houses, of rustic goods, rents, telephone bills and other utilities. Then there are the annuities of perpetual or life annuities, mortgage repayments, tax returns, insurances, newsletters, etc.
Among the credits that go into prescription after 2 years there are water and gas light utilities.
The case of fines. The limitation period begins to run on the day the violation was committed. The term is interrupted each time a payment request is notified.
If, on the other hand, you decide to contest a prescription because the terms have expired then you can proceed in another way, but as long as the terms for the dispute exist. For example it is possible to draw up a letter of formal notice or a warning to be sent to the creditor by registered letter.
If the debtor knows that the statute of limitations has expired, he must inform it formally and must also attach the documentation that certifies the expiry of the limitation periods .
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