2305.131 Ten-year statute of repose for certain premises liability actions.

(A)

(1) Notwithstanding an otherwise applicable period of limitations specified in this chapter or in section 2125.02 of the Revised Code and except as otherwise provided in divisions (A)(2), (A)(3), (C), and (D) of this section, no cause of action to recover damages for bodily injury, an injury to real or personal property, or wrongful death that arises out of a defective and unsafe condition of an improvement to real property and no cause of action for contribution or indemnity for damages sustained as a result of bodily injury, an injury to real or personal property, or wrongful death that arises out of a defective and unsafe condition of an improvement to real property shall accrue against a person who performed services for the improvement to real property or a person who furnished the design, planning, supervision of construction, or construction of the improvement to real property later than ten years from the date of substantial completion of such improvement.

(2) Notwithstanding an otherwise applicable period of limitations specified in this chapter or in section 2125.02 of the Revised Code, a claimant who discovers a defective and unsafe condition of an improvement to real property during the ten-year period specified in division (A)(1) of this section but less than two years prior to the expiration of that period may commence a civil action to recover damages as described in that division within two years from the date of the discovery of that defective and unsafe condition.

(3) Notwithstanding an otherwise applicable period of limitations specified in this chapter or in section 2125.02 of the Revised Code, if a cause of action that arises out of a defective and unsafe condition of an improvement to real property accrues during the ten-year period specified in division (A)(1) of this section and the plaintiff cannot commence an action during that period due to a disability described in section 2305.16 of the Revised Code, the plaintiff may commence a civil action to recover damages as described in that division within two years from the removal of that disability.

(B) Division (A) of this section does not apply to a civil action commenced against a person who is an owner of, tenant of, landlord of, or other person in possession and control of an improvement to real property and who is in actual possession and control of the improvement to real property at the time that the defective and unsafe condition of the improvement to real property constitutes the proximate cause of the bodily injury, injury to real or personal property, or wrongful death that is the subject matter of the civil action.

(C) Division (A)(1) of this section is not available as an affirmative defense to a defendant in a civil action described in that division if the defendant engages in fraud in regard to furnishing the design, planning, supervision of construction, or construction of an improvement to real property or in regard to any relevant fact or other information that pertains to the act or omission constituting the alleged basis of the bodily injury, injury to real or personal property, or wrongful death or to the defective and unsafe condition of the improvement to real property.

(D) Division (A)(1) of this section does not prohibit the commencement of a civil action for damages against a person who has expressly warranted or guaranteed an improvement to real property for a period longer than the period described in division (A)(1) of this section and whose warranty or guarantee has not expired as of the time of the alleged bodily injury, injury to real or personal property, or wrongful death in accordance with the terms of that warranty or guarantee.

(E) This section does not create a new cause of action or substantive legal right against any person resulting from the design, planning, supervision of construction, or construction of an improvement to real property.

(F) This section shall be considered to be purely remedial in operation and shall be applied in a remedial manner in any civil action commenced on or after the effective date of this section, in which this section is relevant, regardless of when the cause of action accrued and notwithstanding any other section of the Revised Code or prior rule of law of this state, but shall not be construed to apply to any civil action pending prior to the effective date of this section.

(G) As used in this section, "substantial completion" means the date the improvement to real property is first used by the owner or tenant of the real property or when the real property is first available for use after having the improvement completed in accordance with the contract or agreement covering the improvement, including any agreed changes to the contract or agreement, whichever occurs first.

Cite as R.C. § 2305.131

History. Effective Date: 04-07-2005