India: Supreme Court extends Limitation Period due to surge in Covid-19 cases
Given the recent spike in Covid-19 cases, the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India, vide order dated January 10, 2022, has issued directions regarding the extension of deadlines on account of impact on public health and difficulties faced by the Litigants. As per the recent order, the Hon’ble Supreme Court has extended the limitation period to the effect that the period from March 15, 2020 until February 28, 2022, shall stand excludedin computing limitation as may be prescribed under any general or special laws in respect of all judicial or quasi-judicial proceedings.
In addition, the Court has also directed that:
1) the balance period of limitation remaining as of October 3, 2021, if any, shall become available with effect from March 1, 2022;
2) in cases where the limitation would have expired during the period between March 15, 2020 till February 28, 2022, notwithstanding the actual balance period of limitation remaining, all persons shall have a limitation period of 90 days from March 1, 2022;
3) if the actual balance period of limitation remaining, with effect from March 1, 2022 is greater than 90 days, that longer period shall apply.
Further, the Court has also clarified that the period from March 15, 2020 till February 28, 2022 shall stand excluded in computing the periods prescribed under any laws which prescribe the period(s) of limitation for instituting proceedings, outer limits (within which the Court or tribunal can condone delay) and termination of proceedings.
In view of the above, if you have any cases with deadlines falling between March 15, 2020 till date, (such as PCT National phase deadline, convention application deadline, request for examination deadline, annuity deadline, Office Action response deadline, opposition/ counter-statement deadline, etc.), please contact us immediately and we will advise you with respect to the same.
With respect to the matters with upcoming (original) deadlines, we request you to kindly provide us with your instructions in a timely manner as per the original deadlines as the Supreme Court order is subject to interpretation by the Indian Patent Office (IPO) and the best practice would be to follow the original deadline. Meanwhile, as and when the IPO issues any orders to clarify the Supreme Court order, we will inform you immediately.
In case you require any clarification on the above, please feel free to write to Mr. Sharabh Shrivastava at email@example.com.