COVID-19 comes to an end – Extension of Limitation

In view of the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, the Supreme Court of India by an order dated March 27, 2020 extended the period of limitation prescribed under the general law or special laws with effect from March 15, 2020 till further orders.

On March 5, 2021 the Supreme Court reviewed its decision and observed that in view of the changing scenario relating to the pandemic, the extension of limitation has served its purpose and should come to an end.

Accordingly, by an Order dated March 8, 2021 ( the Supreme Court has directed that in computing the period of limitation for any suit, appeal, application or proceeding, the period from March 15, 2020 till March 14, 2021 shall stand excluded. Consequently, the balance period of limitation remaining as on March 15, 2020, if any, shall become available with effect from March 15, 2021.

In cases where the limitation have expired during the excluded period, all persons shall have a limitation period of 90 days from March 15, 2021. The Supreme Court also clarified that this order shall apply to limitation for instituting proceedings, outer limits (within which the court or tribunal can condone delay) and termination of proceedings.