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Unifund CCR Partners v. Deboer

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 03-28-2012
Case #: A144530
Duncan, J. for the Court; Haselton, P.J.; and Walters, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/Publications/A144530.pdf

Civil Procedure: When another state’s otherwise applicable statute of limitation period is substantially different than Oregon’s and the application of that statute of limitation would impose an unfair burden on defending against the claim, a court may apply the appropriate Oregon statute of limitation.

Plaintiff Unifund CCR Partners (Unifund) appealed the dismissal of its suit. Unifund brought action to recover amounts due on a credit card account. The lower court granted summary judgment for Deboer, holding that Delaware’s three-year statute of limitation excluded Unifund’s suit. In Delaware, the tolling statute tolls the statute of limitation until a defendant is answerable to suit in Delaware. Unifund appealed the judgment, claiming that Oregon’s six-year statute of limitation applies. The Court of Appeals applied CACV of Colorado v. Stevens and found that applying ORS 12.440, which required the application of Delaware’s statute of limitations, prejudices the defendant by essentially denying him a statute of limitation defense. Therefore, the Court held that pursuant to ORS 12.450, Oregon’s six-year statute of limitation applies, and because Unifund's suit was filed within six-years, the suit was timely. The award of attorney fees is also reversed. Reversed and remanded.