Q We have recently discovered outstanding invoices from a municipal vendor that are several years old, unpaid due to the way payments were applied. Is the city barred from paying claims more than three years old due to the statute of limitations?

A Opinions of the Attorney General’s Office are limited to prospective questions of state law, and cannot validate or invalidate past actions. By way of information only, Section 15-1-49(1) provides that all actions which have no other period of limitation shall be commenced within three years after the cause of action accrues. Actions on open accounts also have a three –year statute, which commences when the items become due and payable. (Sections 15-1-29, -31) Whether the city has an “open account” and whether the applicable statute of limitations has run are factual determinations that the city must make. (Attorney General’s Opinion to Brock, Jr., November 8, 2019)