A recent Court of Appeal decision has added to the case law considering the operation of section 32(1)(a) of the Limitation Act 1980, under which the limitation period for bringing fraud claims does not start until the claimant discovered, or could with reasonable diligence have discovered, the fraud: Seedo v El Gamal and others [2023] EWCA Civ 330.

The court held that:

  • where the limitation issue is being considered at the trial, after a decision on the merits, the question for the court is when the claimant discovered (or could reasonably have discovered) the fraud as found by the court, rather than the fraud as pleaded by the claimant in its statements of case; and
  • where a claimant is deceived by more than one lie in connection with a transaction, the subsequent lies will not start a new limitation period running unless they give rise to a separate cause of action – which will turn on whether the lies were distinct and unconnected or made in furtherance of the same overall deceit.

For more information see this post on our Civil Fraud and Asset Tracing Notes blog.