Expiration of the action

Legally, the expiration of the action or of the right is a phenomenon that occurs, when after the time that the law indicates for the exercise of a right, it expires, leaving the interested party legally prevented from claiming it. Expiration can be caused by many causes: due to the expiration of the term; for the disappearance of the document; for lack of use, etc.

That is, if a person has the power to exercise a legal act, but does not do so within the peremptory period, he loses the right to initiate the corresponding action.

Its purpose is to give truth to certain legal relationships, so that they do not last indefinitely in time.

In Roman law, in inheritance matters, the expiration originated when the hereditary transmission was carried out in a licit way, but the heir later, could not receive the inheritance, for reasons related to it, for example that he has renounced the inheritance, or because he has passed away.

Expiration is made up of two aspects:

The non-activity. It refers to the inaction of the individual to exercise their right to legal action. The expiration of the action can be avoided, only if it is formally established before the competent judicial body.

The term, the expiration of the instance occurs, when its course is not requested within the following terms: six months in the first instance; three months in second or third instance; of a month, in the instance expiration incident.

Expiration and prescription are very similar terms, however they present important differences, some of them are: expiration, refers to inactivity related to a specific behavior; whereas the prescription deals with a general inactivity. The expiration extinguishes both the claim and the right; while the prescription only extinguishes the claim.

In the prescription, the action is extinguished, not the right, while in the expiration both the right and the action are extinguished.

The expiration of the action originates the following effects: it concludes the rights of the beneficiaries. However, if they request an extension, the legal act is considered to have been renewed.

The only way to avoid the expiration of the action is by exercising the act or power.