Statutes of Repose: Protection for manufacturers and material suppliers

Nancy J. White, Nancy Holland

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Most states have adopted Statutes of Repose to protect architects, engineers and constructors of improvements to real property from lawsuits arising after a specific number of years after completion of an improvement to real property. These Statutes of Repose differ from Statues of Limitation in that a statute of repose can bar claims before they have arisen, while a statute of limitation bars claims after they have arisen. The extent to which a statute of repose protects manufacturers and material suppliers varies greatly among the states. State courts have developed two theories to determine if a particular manufacturer or material provider is protected: the improvement analysis and the activity analysis. The activity analysis is superior. The improvement analysis extends protection to products that are defined as "improvements" but not to products that might be component parts or material. The activity analysis extends protection to those entities that incorporate their products into the real property. All states should adopt an activity analysis. All states should extend the protection of the statute of repose to entities which install their product into/onto real property improvements or who custom-make or design products for installation into/onto real property improvements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)119-132
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Construction Education
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1997
Externally publishedYes


  • Activity Analysis
  • Improvement Analysis
  • Limitations of Actions
  • Repose


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