One of the golden rules is that if you are going to sue, do it quick. Notwithstanding the fact that you have got all these so-called alternative methods of sorting your claim out, you should not delay.
The reason for that is that sometimes your claim may become time-barred from bringing your action. Basically, what it means is, if you have got a claim (e.g. there was a breach of contract) – then you should get on with it because there are rules in place which say that in certain categories of cases, if you delay, then you will not be allowed to bring your claim to court. You will be time-barred and the court will reject your statement of claim.
As regards the claims under Polish law, they were recently amended. The periods currently are as follows:
for general civil claims – 6 years;
for claims based on torts – 3 years;
for claims connected with payment of rent for lease of property – 3 years since the rent payment became due;
for claims arising out of sale contracts, mandate agreements and commission contracts – 2 years;
for claims based on forced heirship – 3 years;
for claims based on employment law – 3 years;
for personal injury – it is 3 years from the day that you became aware of the injury.
So, the key point is: do not delay!
The easiest way to protect your claims from becoming time-barred is to file a motion to the court to call upon the defendant to conclude a court settlement. Such a motion interrupts the statute of limitation. Even if the settlement is not reached, the period for bringing the claim to court is renewed.
The recent amendments to Polish law also included additional mechanisms to protect defendants against the enforcement of time-barred claims. The claimant is now obliged in the statement of claim to indicate the date from when the claim became due. The court is now also under an obligation to automatically reject time-barred claims which are filed against individuals who are acting as consumers in a dispute.