The Retribution expansion introduced a new and improved timers system called Crimewatch 2.0, which greatly improve upon the previous one by getting rid of the Global Countdown Timer and generally streamlining the system via the use of specific flags. It's very important to be aware of and understand what the different timers mean and what the implications are in terms of legality. Timers can easily wreak havoc in the fleet causing issues with rules of engagements and remote assistance.
See Crimewatch for more details on the more intricate mechanics of legal timers.
The following timers have no direct impact on the legality of actions, but serve as a consequence for your actions. Keep in mind that the capsuleer log-off timer can indirectly cause legality issues if you are also at war.
The non-capsuleer log-off timer is created when you either shoot or get shot by an NPC. This means you will remain in space if you disconnect or close the client, until the timer runs out. The NPC timer will not be renewed if you are shot while already having disconnected or logged off.
The capsuleer log-off timer is created when you either shoot or get shot by a fellow capsuleer. This means you will remain in space if you disconnect or close the client, until the timer runs out. The timer will be renewed if you are shot while already having disconnected or logged off. So if someone finds you after you logged out they can keep your ship in space indefinitely.
You get a weapon timer whenever you activate an offensive module against another player (including webs, painters, damps, scrams, points, turrets, missiles, drones etc). This effect also happens upon activation of a bastion-module on a marauder (but not for other siege-like modules) as well as activation of Command Burst-modules. Unlike the capsuleer log-off timer, you do not get this flag simply by being shot by another player. While this timer is active you cannot change sessions, which means you cannot jump, dock or eject from, store, refit or switch ships. You also cannot be tethered by a Citadel as long as you have a weapon timer.
The following timers directly determine whether or not you are a legal target.
The suspect timer means that anyone can freely attack you without CONCORD interfering. If someone engages you, a limited engagement timer is created between both of you, to allow you to shoot back at the aggressor. This causes issues with assistance however, due to interfering with a limited engagement (for more information, see limited engagement below).
The criminal timer means that anyone can freely attack you without CONCORD interfering. If someone engages you, a limited engagement timer is created between both of you, to allow you to shoot back at the aggressor. This causes issues with assistance however, due to interfering with a limited engagement (for more information, see limited engagement below).
Being a criminal means that CONCORD will engage and kill you in high security space. The response-time of CONCORD depends on the security of space, anything between a few seconds up to half a minute. During that time, while piloting a ship with a criminal flag you'll be unable to enter warp, jump through gates, dock up in stations, eject from, store or switch ships. Those restrictions are lifted once your ship is destroyed and you're in your capsule. That doesn't necessarily mean you can do these things, as all those actions (with the exception of warping away) would also be prohibited by an active weapon timer.
Being a criminal in low security space is practically the same as being a suspect, as long as you or anyone who assists you have no plans of jumping into high security space for the next fifteen minutes.
Jumping into or undocking a ship in high security space as a criminal will allow you to benefit from the session change timer invulnerability, but it only delays the inevitable demise of your ship. Even if your criminal timer runs out during the invulnerability, CONCORD will still follow through and destroy your ship, even though you're no longer a criminal when the invulnerability wears off.
A limited engagement is a permission between two pilots to freely engage each other or their assets in combat without interference of CONCORD. Limited Engagements are created on attacks towards other pilots that are under a suspect or criminal flag to allow them to defend themselves, but can also be gained from accepting a Duel Request.
As long as a limited engagement is active, the involved pilots may freely engage each other, including attacks on capsules or any other assets. Any other pilot interfering in the combat between two pilots with active limited engagements, such as using remote support modules on one of the parties, will receive a suspect flag for the interference.
Naturally in null security space or wormhole space, where you are allowed to freely engage anyone at any time, there would be no legality issues and no timers apart from the combat timers would be created in the first place.
The Session Change Timer, SCT, is a 10 second timer initiated after performing one of the following things:
The game grants you a 30 second protection after undocking. If you do not activate any modules, or target anyone, or move your ship in any direction after undocking you cannot be targeted or bumped at all for 30 seconds. This can be used to wait out your SCT and re-dock.
You can still press Ctrl+Space to stop your ship (or click the small - icon on the HUD) and retain your invulnerability, this action does not break it.
After jumping through a stargate or wormhole you will have an SCT for 10 seconds, however the entire gate cloak timer is 60 seconds. For this entire 1 minute period you are invulnerable to damage from such effects as bombs, smartbombs and ECM Bursts. For the entire duration of the cloak you cannot be de-cloaked by someone coming within 2000 meters. For the entire period you cannot be bumped to cause you to lose your cloak.
You are effectively completely invulnerable and invisible - however, the gate or wormhole will have flashed to signify a ship has jumped through it (and in k-space you will immediately appear in Local chat), so if anyone happens to be watching they are likely to know you are there.
This timer allows you a period of safety to scout out the system, with d-scan or otherwise, before deciding what course of action to take.
When logging out in space, your ship (if not warp-disrupted/scrambled) will warp off to a random location and remain there for 1 minute until disappearing.
This timer will extend to 5 minutes if you were involved in combat with NPC ships.
It will get extended to 15 minutes if you were involved in pvp, whether it you being aggressive or being aggressed by someone else. Should your ship be destroyed during this time, another 15 minute timer applying to your pod will start.
You can make a maximum of 2 jumps through a specific wormhole in 5 minutes. If you try to jump a third time through the same wormhole inside those 5 minutes, you will receive a message informing you how long you have to wait before you can jump again. This timer doesn't apply to jumping through different wormholes.
When you place or modify a buy or sell order in the market, you will not be allowed to modify that order or delete that order until 5 minutes have elapsed.
While the timer does still exist, members can quit corporation even without waiting 24 hours after dropping roles by right clicking their portrait in chat and choosing quit corporation? and confirm quit corporation.
If you choose to terminate one of the characters owned by your account, it will enter the recycling queue for a 10 hour waiting period. When the 10 hour timer expires, you can complete the termination of the character and re-use the slot for a new character.