What is the statute of limitations for a debt?

UPDATED: Nov 21, 2011

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What is the statute of limitations for a debt?

I have been notified from a collection company they want to collect on a check I wrote 5 years ago. They sent me a photocopy and its my check. I want to know can they take me to court for it? In OH.

Asked on November 21, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Ohio


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

There is no statute of limitations per se on a debt. Rather the statute of limitations pertains to a cause of action or a particular theory of recovery. In most states in this country, the statute of limitations to file a lawsuit for breach of contract is four (4) years.

Common counts, another legal theory or recovery for benefits conferred upon some one is likewise typically a four (4) year statute of limitations to file suit from the brach or when the debt was due.

From what you have written, the check that you wrote more than five (5) years ago that presumably did not clear could very well be barred by all applicable statute of limitations on theories of recovery against you.

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