The Child Victims Act has extended the statute of limitations regarding survivors of New York child sex abuse. Victims now have more time to report abuse cases and press criminal charges against the offenders. In regards to civil cases, the CVA has allowed an extension of the time that survivors can file a claim to receive monetary damages.
Changes in civil cases
One of the biggest changes in the CVA is the extension of the statute of limitations for filing civil suits against the at-fault parties. Additionally, survivors were given up to five years to bring up a lawsuit against their abuser after they turned 18 years old. Many victims were unlikely to be able to bring up their suit within this time period, and some were unable to deal with the situation emotionally until many years later. As a result of the new CVA, survivors can now bring up civil suits against their abusers until they are 55 years old.
With many claims were already barred by the previous statute of limitations, many victims were unable to file a lawsuit against their abuser. The CVA has opened the door for these types of cases by allowing a one-year look-back period. During this period, abuse victims who were unable to file a suit due to the previous statute of limitations are now able to file a lawsuit within one year of the CVA’s implementation.
Private and public institutions can be held responsible
Sexual abuse victims can now file a claim against both private and public institutions that were involved in the abuse. Traditionally, victims had to file a notice of claim before they could proceed with a lawsuit. Under the new CVA, survivors can now immediately file a claim against these institutions as long as they are within the statute of limitations.
As the law starts to catch up with the emotional needs of abuse victims, the CVA has been one great step forward for survivors in New York. Not only do they have more time to file a claim against a former abuser, but they may also now file claims against both private and public institutions that were involved. It’s likely that more laws will be passed in the coming years regarding child abuse victims and their ability to seek compensation.