[HN32] Under the doctrine of nullum tempus, the sovereign is exempt from the consequences of its laches, and from the operation of statutes of limitations, unless the statute specifically provides otherwise. The policy behind the doctrine has been the preservation of the public rights, revenues, and property from injury or loss, by the negligence of public officers. The doctrine is well-established in Rhode Island.
Governments > Legislation > Statutes of Limitations > General Overview
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Torts > Procedure > Statutes of Limitations > General Overview
[HN33] To the extent that a state's allegations claim harm resulting from lead in public buildings, the state retains the nullum tempus exemption from the operation of a statute of limitations, unless by its terms the statute expressly includes the state. The pertinent statute of limitations, R.I. Gen. Laws § 9-1-13 (1956), does not expressly exempt the state.