On January 28 2019, there was a major development for those who have been victims of sexual abuse as children. Both chambers of the New York State Legislature passed the Child Victims Act, which has been sent to Governor Cuomo for his signature.
The Child Victims Act extends the current statute of limitations for childhood sex abuse that occurred in the state of New York. Under the new law, prosecutors will be able to bring criminal charges against sexual abusers until the victim is 28 years old. The act also allows victims to bring a lawsuit in civil court against their abusers until the age of 55.
In addition, the act allows a one-year window, starting six months from the effective date of the act, for past victims of child sexual abuse to initiate lawsuits against their abusers and the public and private institutions that let the abuse happen. Further, the act eliminates the Notice of Claim requirement for bringing suits against public institutions both prospectively and during the one-year window for past victims.