How long is the statute of limitation for a verbal contract in California?
I lend money in a form of a check to someone, on the check it says "loan." The promise to pay back was made verbally. Is this an oral contract or verbal? And what are the statute of limitations of each?
The statute of limitations on an oral agreement in California is two years. Code of Civil Procedure section 399. Under the case of Tanzola v. De Rita (1955) 45 Cal.2d 1, however, writing a check to someone with the word "loan" on it, the other person endorsing and cashing the check, etc., may and likely will constitute a written agreement, enabling the four year statute of limitations for written agreements. The court may also consider extrinsic evidence to determine the ambiguous terms, such as when the loan was to be paid back.
In additon to the previous answer, note that the statute of limitations starts running from the date pf breach. So if payments were made for a while or if there was a set date for repayment, you would measure from when a payment was first missed.
In California, the statute of limitations for breach of an oral contract is 2 years from breach or date of last payment, whichever is later. The statute of limitations for breach of written contract is 4 years from breach or date of last payment, whichever is later. The check might constitute a written contract.
Frank W. Chen has been licensed to practice law in California since 1988. The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice for a particular case. This posting does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author. For specific advice about your particular situation, consult with your own attorney.
Statute of limitation on oral contracts in California is 2 years from the breach. I suggest you speak with an attorney regarding potentially filing a lawsuit. We provide free consultations, if you like feel free to contact our office.
Attorney's response is not intended as legal advice and is intended for informational purposes only. Attorney's response does not create an attorney client relationship. Inquirer should seek the advice of a duly licensed attorney within that particular jurisdiction.