Editor's Notes

Statutes of limitation—the mechanism for establishing a deadline for asserting one’s rights—usually stipulate an adequate period of time. Five years from discovery of the problem is common. Questions arise, however. Can parties to a contract reduce the amount of time allowed for a claims assertion? What are the public policy concerns when a provider of services contractually circumscribes the other party’s claim period?


The Georgia Supreme Court recently addressed a situation in which a private contract called for a one-year limitation period on claims, substantially reducing the statutory five-year period. An aggrieved plaintiff argued this abridgment of its rights violated public policy. The defendant, who drafted the agreement, said a contract is a contract.


The other case in this issue involved a federal solicitation for construction services using a “best value” negotiated procurement process. The government increased the construction performance period by 50% midway through the procurement. The low-price offeror argued this had been prejudicial to its proposed shorter, fast-track construction schedule.




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