Missouri Debt Collection Laws

James McNeil Rick Milone Dustin Stiles

Submitted by James McNeil, Rick Milone & Dustin Stiles, Cohen McNeile & Pappas, P.C.


Published by The National List of Attorneys



Cohen McNeile & Pappas P.C. represents a diverse group of local, regional and national companies to handle their business debt collection, bankruptcy, real and personal property foreclosure and litigation needs. Our attorneys are licensed to practice in both Missouri and Kansas, and are prepared to offer prompt and efficient legal guidance throughout each state, having offices in the Kansas City and St. Louis metropolitan areas. The firm is directed by its board of directors, Clifford A. Cohen, James M. McNeile, and Gregory J. Pappas. Rick Milone has been an associate with the firm since 2008, and Dustin Styles relocated from Nebraska to join as an associate in 2011. Together they’ve prosecuted hundreds of hearings and trials before numerous state, federal, and appellate courts throughout each of Missouri and Kansas. Mr. Milone and Mr. Styles authored this whitepaper under the direction and supervision of Mr. McNeile.

Statutes of Limitation

Missouri Revised Statutes Chapter 516 lists Missouri’s applicable statutes of limitation for nearly all civil actions. R.S.Mo. § 516.120 states that actions on contract (except upon a writing) shall be maintained within five years. Other causes of action filed on debts (such as suits on open account, account stated, quantum meruit, etc.) will have their own statutes of limitations. Missouri probably does not include most boilerplate agreements as made “upon a writing,” unless executed by the party against whom the contract is to be enforced.

Missouri judgments are governed by statute (Revised Statutes of Missouri Chapter 511) and Supreme Court Rule (Rule of Civil Procedure 74). Most Missouri domestic judgments remain enforceable for a period of ten years, unless revived by statutory action or payment into court upon the judgment. R.S.Mo. § 516.350. Exceptions may arise in the case of support/maintenance judgments or orders.

Missouri has common law remedies to enforce foreign judgments, as well as the Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act. R.S.Mo. § 511.760, et seq. However, whether and what the statute of limitations might be on a foreign judgment to be enforced in Missouri is not an easy nor straightforward analysis.


Download the complete white paper Missouri Debt Collection Laws.