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A Tolling Agreement is a document that allows parties to continue negotiating a settlement after the expiration of a statutory time limit. Within the agreement, the parties (the "claimant" and the "respondent") agree to "toll" a time-based statute which may running on a claim. For most claims, a "statute of limitations" is likely to apply. This is a law which says that you have to bring a legal action within a certain amount of time.
For example, imagine a car accident where someone is hit by another driver, the person being hit is the claimant, because they would have the claim. The person that hit them would be the respondent. They may live in a state where the statute of limitations for a car accident is one year. A statute of limitations is a law which says that you have to bring a legal action within a certain amount of time. Imagine, however, that the claimant and respondent wanted to try to work out the issue outside the court system, such as through a settlement, but they haven't managed to come to an agreement within a year. If they'd like to keep working on it and not worry about needing to file a case, they may sign a Tolling Agreement.
In these types of situations, generally the claimant is the one who would be more concerned about the statute of limitations running, because the claimant is the one that would lose their right to bring the case in a court of law.
This document should be filled out before the statute of limitations has run, otherwise it will be meaningless.
How to use this document
This document would ideally be used before litigation is begun in a potential claim between two parties. The parties should decide upon a tolling date that they can both agree on. The tolling date is the date until which the statute of limitations or other time-based statutes will begin to run. In other words, if the parties are coming up against a statute of limitations, the Tolling Agreement would extend the time for them to be able to work through things in a nonjudicial manner.
This document is quite simple - it contains the identities of the parties as well the details of the claim, and of course, the tolling date. Other than that, most of the form is already drafted.
Once this document is filled out, it should ideally be printed and signed by both of the parties. Then each party should keep a copy.
Tolling Agreements will be subject either to the laws of the individual states or to federal laws, depending on what particular claim is being tolled. This agreement allows the parties to choose which state's law they wish to govern the agreement.
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