The Child Victims Act Extends Rights for Child Abuse Survivors
The New York State Legislature recently passed a bill, the Child Victims Act, which will extend the previous time limit on child abuse cases and allow survivors of child abuse to sue their abusers. Previous legislation made it impossible for victims of child abuse to take legal action after they reached the age of 23, which limited several victims from seeking justice. Now, the new bill will extend the statute of limitations and victims will be able to sue their abusers until they reach the age of 55.
The Child Victims Act will now allow all child abuse victims to take legal action anytime until they reach the age of 55. Additionally, for one year, victims of any age, (including those over the age of 55), may sue their abusers. This one-year window will open 6 months from the date the bill officially passed.
The new bill also extends the criminal statute of limitations for child sex crimes from survivors of age 23 to age 28 for felonies and 25 for misdemeanors. For civil actions, however, the extension gives survivors the power to press charges until they are 55 years old.
Under this new bill, the claim provision will also change. Previous law required all public and private institutions to receive notification of prospective claims at least 90 days out. However, the new bill eliminates this notice of claim provision entirely, both during the statute of limitations and during the coming one-year claims period.
As a result of the new legislation, the government expects an influx of lawsuits against individuals and institutions responsible for child sexual assaults over the past several decades. To prepare for this, the bill states that it will provide training for all judges expected to deal with child sexual abuse cases.
Let Our Firm Help You
If you or someone you love was a victim of child sexual abuse in New York, this new legislation could affect you. The damage inflicted by these types of crimes is rarely short-term, and they often cause a variety of physical, mental, and emotional harm. Our firm has ample experience representing the injured, and our personal injury lawyers want to help you seek justice and compensation from the responsible party.
We know how troubling these types of cases can be, which is why we are passionate about providing our clients with step-by-step legal guidance, compassion, and experience-based results. For decades we have advocated for the injured, and we want to help you recover from your injuries and stand up against the institutions and individuals who harmed you.
Contact Silbowitz, Garafola, Silbowitz, Schatz & Frederick, LLP to schedule a free case review with our NYC personal injury attorneys.