It can take years to process the pain and trauma caused by sexual abuse. A recent New York law lifted the statute of limitations on civil lawsuits filed by survivors who were abused as adults, allowing them to take action regardless of when the abuse took place.
At Sokolove Law, we are committed to supporting survivors of abuse and working to hold those who caused them harm accountable. If you are looking to take steps toward closure and healing, we are here to help.
New York Lifts Sexual Abuse Statute of Limitations
On November 24, 2022, the New York Adult Survivors Act (ASA) went into effect.
This act allows anyone who was sexually abused as an adult to file a civil lawsuit against the individual or institution responsible, regardless of how long ago the abuse occurred.
However, the statute of limitations for victims of adult sexual abuse has only been lifted for one year, which means that survivors only have until November 23, 2023 to take legal action.
A previous New York law that passed in 2019 extended the statute of limitations for survivors of adult sexual abuse to 20 years for all future cases of sexual abuse — but this did not apply retroactively to cases that occurred in the past.
By filing a civil lawsuit for sexual abuse, you may be able to receive financial compensation and hold the individual or institution that caused you harm accountable.
Filing a Sexual Abuse Civil Lawsuit in NYC
The Adult Survivors Act allows New York residents to pursue a civil lawsuit against the individual that abused them — and against any institutions or organizations that had a responsibility to prevent, notice, or stop the abuse.
Many abusers commit assaults in spaces where they feel in control and less likely to be held accountable for their behavior. These beliefs are often reinforced by the power and protection granted to them by the institution they belong to.
If an institution or organization enabled your abuser or failed to protect you from abuse, they may be partially responsible for the harm you experienced. Taking legal action can also potentially prevent similar harm from happening to others.
Where Does Sexual Abuse Occur?
Sexual abuse can occur in a wide range of both private and public settings, including:
- Community programs
- Schools and universities
- And more
Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to hold institutions and organizations like these accountable for their role in your abuse.
Record labels, media companies, and Wall Street employers are just a few of the groups that have been named in New York sexual abuse lawsuits since the Adult Survivors Act was signed into law.
If you experienced sexual abuse, you are not alone. If you choose to take legal action against the institution or individual that caused you harm, our team is here to support you and fight on your behalf.
Who Can File a Sexual Abuse Lawsuit in New York?
Under the New York Adult Survivors Act, you may be able to file a civil lawsuit for sexual abuse in New York if you are a survivor of sexual abuse that occurred when you were over the age of 18.
Abusers who caused harm decades ago may have since passed away, but this does not prevent survivors from filing a lawsuit.
Even if your abuser is deceased, you may still be able to take legal action against their estate or any institution that enabled or covered up your abuse.
Whether or not someone’s actions meet the legal definition of sexual abuse can be confusing, especially if the abuse happened decades ago.
At Sokolove Law, we have registered nurses on staff that can help you make sense of what happened.
Choosing a New York Sexual Abuse Lawyer
If you or a loved one has been a victim of sexual abuse, a lawyer can help you fight for justice and compensation.
At Sokolove Law, our experienced New York sexual abuse attorneys can handle every step of the legal process for you, so you can focus on your health and well-being.
Our sexual abuse lawyers may be able to:
- Advocate for victims of sexual assault and abuse
- Provide guidance through the legal process, so survivors can focus on their healing
- File a civil lawsuit on behalf of sexual abuse survivors
- Pursue compensation that can aid survivors and their families in finding closure
We believe that your story can help in the battle to end sexual abuse, and we're here to help if you choose to take legal action.
Learn More About Filing a Sexual Abuse Claim in New York
Sokolove Law has fought to amplify the voices of survivors in the justice system for over 40 years, and we are committed to helping people impacted by sexual abuse seek closure and accountability.
Our New York abuse attorneys understand that it can take years to process trauma. We're prepared to stand by your side throughout the entire legal process.
We are compassionate toward survivors and relentless in our pursuit of compensation on their behalf.
New York City Sexual Abuse Lawsuits FAQs
What is the New York Adult Survivors Act?
The New York Adult Survivors Act is a law that allows New York residents who were sexually assaulted as adults to file a civil lawsuit against the individuals or institutions responsible, regardless of how long ago the abuse took place.
However, this law only removed the statute of limitations on civil sexual abuse cases for one year, which means that victims who were abused decades ago only have until November 23, 2023 to file a lawsuit.
What is the statute of limitation on sexual abuse in New York?
Thanks to the New York Adult Survivors Act of 2022, there is currently no statute of limitations on adult sex abuse cases in New York.
Victims of adult sexual abuse can pursue a civil lawsuit regardless of how long ago their abuse occurred until this law expires in November 2023.
The statute of limitations for all future cases of adult sexual abuse is 20 years.
How much does a New York City sexual abuse lawyer cost?
At Sokolove Law, our New York sexual abuse attorneys charge no hourly fees or out-of-pocket costs.
We only get paid if we recover compensation for you, so there is no financial risk to working with us.
Can I file a sexual abuse lawsuit against someone who is no longer alive?
In some instances, yes. You may be able to file a lawsuit against a deceased abuser’s estate, which contains the sum of the assets that they left behind.
You may also still file a lawsuit against institutions like churches or workplaces that may be partially to blame for the harm you experienced.
Our attorneys can work with you to determine your eligibility for compensation, even if your abuser has passed away.
What constitutes sexual abuse?
Generally speaking, sexual abuse is any unwanted sexual or sexually motivated behavior performed without a person’s consent.
Sexual abuse can include:
- Forcible touching
- Rape or attempted rape
- Sexual misconduct or exploitation
We have registered nurses on staff who can help you understand what may have happened.