Governor Cuomo yesterday (February 14) signed the Child Victims Act, bringing into law measures that will ensure survivors of childhood sexual abuse have a path to justice.
Under previous law, child sexual abuse offenses could not be prosecuted after five years from their occurrence and civil lawsuits had to be brought within three years from the victim’s 18th birthday.
The new bill amends those laws and also allows victims of these crimes to pursue criminal charges until they turn 28 for felony cases, up from the current 23. They can also pursue a civil lawsuit at any time before they reach 55 years old.
It also provides victims whose claims have been time-barred a new opportunity for their day in court by opening a one-year window for them to commence their action.
The legislation was already passed by both houses last week.