No suit or action shall be brought against the Department by a contractor or any persons claiming under him or on behalf of a subcontractor of the contractor or a person furnishing materials for the contract to the contractor on any contract executed pursuant to this article or by others on any claim arising from the performance of the contract by the contractor, subcontractor, or person furnishing materials to the contractor, unless the claimant has exhausted the review process provided by § 33.2-1101. Further, no such suit or action shall be brought unless such suit or action is brought within 12 months from receipt of the decision of the Commissioner of Highways. In no event shall any delay therein on the part of the contractor, subcontractor, or person furnishing materials be construed as a reason for extending the time within which such suit or action must be brought. In any case brought against the Department on behalf of a subcontractor or person furnishing materials to the contractor, lack of privity between the parties shall be no defense; however, any such case brought on behalf of a subcontractor or person furnishing materials to the contractor shall only be brought for costs and expenses caused by the acts or omissions of the Department and shall not be brought for costs and expenses caused by the contractor.
1976, c. 230, § 33.1-192.1; 1982, c. 647; 1991, c. 691; 2014, c. 805.