Child Victims Act look-back window to close next month

State News

ALBANY, N.Y. (WTEN) – Time is dwindling to file a civil lawsuit under New York State’s Child Victims Act. The lookback window officially closes August 14th. 

According to a tally from a spokesperson with the New York State Unified Court System, more than 7,300 cases have been filed under the Child Victims Act since the lookback window opened in August of 2019.

The window is for adults who were time barred from filing a civil suit for sex crimes that happened when they were a child. 

The law firm Jeff Anderson & Associates says more than 1,700 alleged perpetrators are tied to Catholic Diocese in New York. “Brave survivors under the Child Victims Act had the courage to bring these civil suits to share their secret and to take action,” Anderson said. 

The firm has a new digital database where anyone can search for data by diocese or by alleged perpetrator. “It’s really effective when survivors can see for the first time that an individual offender has been exposed as an offender when they have believed they’re the only ones, or an individual institution or a school has been exposed as employing a practice that protects offenders,” said Anderson.

This legislative session lawmakers had discussed the Adult Survivors Act. It would have created a look-back window similar to the Child Victims Act, but for those who were sexually abused as adults and are time barred from filing civil suits. It passed in the Senate but did not get a vote in the Assembly.

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