Claims against Solicitors must be brought (by issuing court proceedings) within certain time limits known as limitation periods.
The usual time period is six years from the date on which the relevant cause of action accrued (which in broad terms is the date when the retainer was breached or the date when you suffered loss – these dates may be different). This time limit is known as “primary limitation”. If you try and bring a claim after this date, the Solicitor may have a complete defence to it.
A claimant may not always be aware that they have suffered a loss or have knowledge of all the material facts until after primary limitation has expired. In those circumstances, it may be possible for a claimant to bring a claim if they do so within three years of becoming aware of the material facts. This is subject to a long-stop period of 15 years from the date of the negligent act after which any claim (absent fraud or deliberate concealment) will be statute barred.