For a comprehensive look at state-by-state Statute of Limitations click here
The following reflect recent changes that have been implemented and/or are being looked at in some states regarding Statute of Limitations. As many survivors of the Catholic Church, Boy Scouts of America, Jerry Sandusky, et al., are well past most statute of limitations, the following changes become very important in seeking redress for the abuses suffered as small children. This is encouraging news and, I hope, helpful to some here.
A state senator on Friday sought to get rid of the statute of limitations preventing some victims of child molestation from suing their abusers.
Sen. Jim Beall, D-San Jose, said current law requires that victims sue by their 26th birthday, or within three years of the date they discovered their psychological trauma was linked to sexual abuse during their youth.
He said Senate Bill 131, if approved, would help victims whose repressed memories of the abuse did not surface until after their deadline to file a lawsuit expired.
If SB 131 is signed into law, it would eliminate the statute of limitations for actions that occur after Jan. 1, 2014. The bill contains a retroactivity clause for certain cases prior to that date.
In 2010, Florida made sweeping changes to their Statute of Limitation Laws (note the last line in this excerpt):
on May 11, 2010, Governor Charlie Crist signed into law Florida House Bill 525 eliminat[ing] the statute of limitations on both criminal and civil claims relating to children under the age of 16.
The new law goes into effect and applies to any claim that would not have been barred by the existing statute of limitations as of July 1, 2010.
A Missouri task force that spent a year studying ways to prevent child sexual abuse is offering 22 recommendations to the governor, lawmakers and the State Board of Education.
In a report released Thursday, the task force recommends changing Missouri law to require that people legally obligated to report suspected abuse contact the state's Children's Division directly. The existing law allows so-called mandatory reporters to notify someone in their own organizations.
The panel also recommends eliminating the statute of limitations for prosecuting first-degree statutory rape and statutory sodomy.
Lawmakers [in Pennsylvania] announced another push to do away with the statute of limitations on reporting child sex abuse. The legislation would allow sex abuse victims an unlimited amount time to go after their abusers.
OLYMPIA – Washington may extend the statute of limitations on cases of child rape, making it possible to convict some predators after their victims grow up.
Senate Bill 5100 would allow rape cases involving victims under 18 to be prosecuted until the victim turns 30, remove the one-year reporting requirement and expand the statute of limitations for other sex crimes involving minors like child molestation and indecent liberties.
Special note for those military veterans who are survivors
In a lawsuit filed yesterday, a military veteran who was abused over 25 years ago filed suit against the Boy Scouts of America. According to the article:
His lawsuit is possible, in part, due to federal legislation that makes the statute of limitations for his claims—which may otherwise have expired—inoperable during his years of military service. That statute, the Servicemembers’ Civil Relief Act, provides protection to all members of the U.S. military who suffered abuse prior to entering active service.