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Prescription (Scotland) Act 2018

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Section 1 - Obligations to pay damages and delictual obligations

5.Currently, paragraph 1(d) of schedule 1 of the 1973 Act refers to obligations arising from liability to make reparation. The courts have interpreted “reparation” narrowly to mean only a claim for the payment of damages arising from a wrongful act. Consequently, obligations arising from delict other than the obligation to pay damages currently do not fall within the five-year prescription.

6.Section 1 amends paragraph 1 of schedule 1 of the 1973 Act. Subsection (2) inserts a new sub-paragraph (d). This makes clear that obligations to pay damages fall within the scope of the five-year prescription regardless of their source; examples are obligations arising by virtue of any enactment, the common law, delict, breach of contract or promise.

7.Subsection (2) also inserts a new sub-paragraph (da) into paragraph 1 of schedule 1 of the 1973 Act to the effect that the five-year prescription, in addition to applying to all obligations to pay damages, extends to any obligations arising from the law of delict which do not fall within any other sub-paragraph of paragraph 1.

8.Subsection (3) makes textual changes to section 11 of the 1973 Act to reflect new sub-paragraph (d) of paragraph 1 of schedule 1 of the 1973 Act.

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