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The Effect of Partial Payment on Time Barred Debt

Under Texas law, a partial payment does not automatically re-start an otherwise expired statute of limitations on a debt unless a written agreement is made. See e.g, Stine v. Stewart, 80 S.w.3d 586, 591 (Tex. 2002).  Section 16.065 of the Texas Civil Practice & Remedies Code provides: “An acknowledgment of the justness of a claim that appears to be barred by limitations is not admissible in evidence to defeat the law of limitations if made after the time that the claim is due unless the acknowledgement is in writing and is signed by the party to be charged. Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 16.065.  Texas law requires a new agreement that must 1) be in writing and signed by the party to be charged; 2) contain an unequivocal acknowledgment of the particular obligation; and 3) refer to the obligation and express a willingness to honor that obligation. Stine, 80 S.W.3d at 591. Even then, a party may only sue for a breach based on the new written agreement and not the expired debt. Id.

Sarah Grace Chastain