NY Child Victims Act Revives Sexual Abuse Claims

New York's Child Victims Act has opened up a one year window to allow civil sexual abuse cases, previously barred by the statute of limitations. The window will open on August 14, 2019, and close on August 14th, 2020.

New York's Child Victims Act has opened up a one year window to allow civil sexual abuse cases, previously barred by the statute of limitations. The window will open on August 14, 2019, and close on August 14th, 2020.


New York’s Child Victims Act has expanded the time to sue for sexual abuse, and in many cases revived claims previously barred by the statute of limitations. Previously, the statute of limitations for a civil case involving sexual abuse was at most 5 years from the date of incident, or from the victim’s 18th birthday, whichever occurred later. Now, any person who was sexually abused while under the age of 18, will have until they are 55 years old to file a lawsuit. Additionally, if a lawsuit had not been commenced prior to the enactment of the Child Victim’s Act, that lawsuit may now be brought, so long as it is commenced by August 14, 2020.

Thus any person who was 23 years of age or older as of February 14, 2019 (the day the CVA was signed), and sexually abused while under 18, may bring a lawsuit for sexual abuse by August 14, 2020, or they will be forever barred from doing so. Any person who was under the age of 23 on February 14, 2019, and sexually abused while under 18, has until they are age 55 to commence such a lawsuit. If someone was sexually abused after turning 18 years old, the old statutes of limitations apply.

The foregoing is true whether the claim is against the individual abuser, or the institution the abuser was associated with.

Many cases that had previously been prevented because they were not commenced before the statute of limitations had run out, are now expected to be filed against institutions such as the Catholic Church, other religious institutions, the Boy Scouts of America, as well as, against schools, government agencies and other organizations which had children in their care.


If you were a victim of sexual abuse as a child, and are looking to be fairly compensated, time might be of the essence. It is important that you contact an experienced personal injury attorney immediately. Zalman, Schnurman, & Miner P.C are personal injury attorneys with over 30 years of experience serving the Metropolitan New York Area. The first consultation is always free and our firm can be reached over phone at 212-668-0059 and through email at info@1800lawline.com.

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