Q: Can equitable tolling of the SOL be applied to issues that were incorporated in prior lawsuits that were dismissed?
Can equitable tolling of the statute of limitations be applied to issues or claims that were incorporated in prior lawsuits that were eventually dismissed for other technical reasons?
A: Maryland courts construe statutes of limitations strictly, and equitable tolling only will be applied to suspend the running of a statute of limitations if the defendant holds out an inducement not to file suit or indicates that limitations will not be pleaded. Otherwise, the time to file suit runs from the date the cause of action accrues. When a previous lawsuit has been dismissed or otherwise terminated, then in addition to limitations issues there may be other bars to bringing an action based on matters that were raised or should have been raised or encompassed in the prior litigation, including res judicata, collateral estoppel, accord and satisfaction, etc.
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