OHIO APPELLATE COURT AFFIRMS | Key Points

  1. Earlier this month Ohio’s Court of Appeals, Eighth District, affirmed the dismissal of a tort action based on it being untimely filed under R.C. 2305.19, Ohio’s Saving Statute. Rector v. Dorsey, 8th Dist. No. 109835, 2021-Ohio-2675. Under § 2305.19, a plaintiff is given additional time to “refile a dismissed claim that would otherwise be time-barred” as long as the prior dismissal was not on the merits. The time period for refiling under § 2305.19 is “one of two dates: ‘either the time left in the limitations period, or one year from the date of the prior dismissal.’”

  2. The Court concluded that since the plaintiff dismissed his original action on February 7, 2018, he had the later of February 8, 2018 (under the statute of limitations), or February 7, 2019 (under the Saving Statute) to refile his claim to avoid it being time-barred. Either way, he was only allowed to rely on the Saving Statute to refile his claim once. Since the plaintiff filed his claim for the third time in August 2019 it was both untimely and improper under R.C. 2305.19. The Eighth District affirmed summary judgment in plaintiff’s favor on these grounds.

  3. The holding of this case can be generally applied to all types of lawsuits since dismissal was based wholly on procedural grounds. The take-away here is that when a case is dismissed it is imperative to note the applicable statute of limitations period, taking into account the extended filing window available under the Savings Statute. Once the alternative filing deadlines are determined under those statutes, the file notes should clearly reflect only one subsequent filing will be permitted under R.C. 2305.19.

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