Statute of limitations on sex abuse crime issue for new legislative session

Jan 6, 2017

New York lawmakers will again face a proposal this year to lift the statutes of limitations on sex abuse crimes.

Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York, speaks to reporters during a news conference in New York in October.
Credit Seth Wenig / Associated Press

Supporters of the bill gathered at the state Capitol as the new legislative session began to urge lawmakers to pass the bill, which has faced repeated obstacles in the Legislature. 

The proposal would give victims more time to file civil lawsuits or seek criminal charges against their abusers. In previous years the measure has run into opposition from institutions such as the Catholic Church.

The bill would also create a one-year window for past victims to file civil suits even if the statute of limitations has already run out. Victims now have until they turn 23 to file lawsuits, but supporters say it can take years before victims step forward.