Passage of the New York Child Victims Act has been a long and contentious legislative battle. HoganWillig PLLC has been directly involved in the fight to pass the Child Victims Act. In 2015, Attorney William A. Lorenz, Jr. traveled to Albany to lobby for the bill with one of HoganWillig’s clients. Assemblywoman Margaret Markey invited him to work with several downstate attorneys on amending the Child Victims Act in the hopes of getting it passed. While the bill did not pass in 2015, HoganWillig continued to lobby on behalf of its clients.
With the signing of the bill into law here are the new conditions that need to be understood by anyone looking to bring a childhood abuse case before the NY Court System.
- Survivors of abuse have until the age of 28 to bring criminal charges against their abuser, or five years from the age of 23 (was originally five years from the age of 18, or 23).
- Survivors of abuse now have until the age of 55 to commence a civil action against their abuser (was originally age 23).
- For survivors of abuse that are already over the age of 23 (the old law), and/or were time-barred for any reason, a one-year “revival” window will begin six months from the effective date of the Act (once Gov. Cuomo signs it into law).
- The notice of claim requirement is now waived for claims of childhood abuse.
- The Child Victims Act applies to ALL claims of abuse, private or public. It is not an attack against any one organization, religion, or individual.
- Potential clients still need to prove their case in a court of law through litigation, merely filing a Complaint does not guarantee a financial settlement.
- If a potential client has accepted a settlement from the Diocese through the Independent Reconciliation Compensation Program (IRCP), it is highly likely they will not be able to pursue litigation. We can still evaluate their claim and their process with the IRCP to determine if that is true.
If you or someone you know is a survivor of childhood abuse, please consider knowledgeable & compassionate legal counsel for representation. Call 716-636-7600 to speak with attorneys Steven Cohen, William Lorenz or Diane Tiveron.