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SC Extends Limitation Period Under Arbitration Act & Negotiable Instrument Act Till Further Orders

The Supreme Court on Wednesday has extended the limitation period prescribed under Section 138 of the negotiable Instruments Act and the Arbitration and Conciliation Act from March 15 until further orders.

The bench comprising the Chief Justice SA Bobde, Justice Deepak Gupta & Justice Hrishikesh Roy was hearing a suo motu case in which application had been made  for extension of limitation under the statutory provisions of section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act and Section 29A of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act.

The bench observed “taking into consideration the effect of the Corona Virus (COVID-19) and resultant difficulties being faced by the lawyers and litigants and with a view to obviate such difficulties and to ensure that lawyers/litigants do not have to come physically to file such proceedings in respective Courts/Tribunal across the country including this Court, it is hereby ordered that all periods of limitation prescribed under the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 and under section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act 1881 shall be extended with effect from 15.03.2020 till further orders 3 to be passed by this Court in the present proceedings.”

The bench further clarified that in case the limitation has expired after March 15, then the period from March 15 till the date on which lockdown is lifted in the area where the cause of action arises shall be extended for a period of 15 days after lifting of the lockdown.

-India Legal Bureau

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