This section is from the book "The Law Of Contracts", by William Herbert Page. Also available from Amazon: Commercial Contracts: A Practical Guide to Deals, Contracts, Agreements and Promises.
The exact language of the exceptions to the statute of limitations created by the statute itself, depends of course upon the wording of the particular statute laying down such rule of limitations and the exception thereto. No exact statement therefore can be made of the general effect of all statutes, and a specific discussion of the separate statutes of each state would not fall within the scope of this work. The general principles, however, underlying the most of the state statutes, are substantially alike; and those general principles will be discussed here. The statutory exceptions to the statute of limitations may be roughly grouped under two headings: (1) Those arising by reason of some specific disability of the plaintiff; and, (2) those arising out of specific conduct of the defendant. The common classes of disability of the plaintiff enumerated in the statute are here discussed. It must be noticed, however, that if the statute omits one of these classes, the court cannot, for reasons already given, supply such omissions, no matter how unreasonable to have omitted such exception.1 If the plaintiff is an infant when the cause of action accrues, the statutes generally provide either that limitation shall not run during his minority, or that after he reaches full age, a certain time shall be given to him within which to maintain an action.2 Where such exception is made, the fact that the minor has a guardian who could maintain the action on behalf of the minor, does not make limitations run against the infant.3 So limitations has been held not to run against a trustee where the beneficiary is a minor.4 If the plaintiff is insane when the cause of action accrues, the statutes generally provide, either that limitations does not run until he regains sanity, or that after he regains sanity certain additional time shall be allowed him within which to maintain his action.5 It is not necessary that there be an adjudication of insanity in order to bring the plaintiff within this exception.6 This statutory exception exists even if a guardian has been appointed for the insane person by whom such action could be maintained.
10 Hall v. Greenbaum. 33 Fed. 22; Parker v. Sanborn, 7 Gray (Mass.) 191.
1 See Sec. 1660.
2 Falls v. Wright. 55 Ark. 562; 29 Am. St. Rep. 74; 18 S. W. 1044; Lambert v. Billheimer, 125 Ind. 519; 25 N. E. 451; Myers v. Korb (Ky.), 50 S. W. 1108; Smith v.
Felter, 61 N. J. L. 102; 38 Atl. 746; Darrow v. Calkins, 154 X. Y. 503; 61 Am. St. Rep. 637; 49 N. E. 61; Carroll v. Montgomery, 128 N. C. 278; 38 S. E. 874.
3 Grimsby v. Hudnell, 76 Ga. 378; 2 Am. St. Rep. 46.
4 Ward v. Ward, 12 Ohio C. D. 59.