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Our attorneys stay on top of changes in legislation, agency regulations, case law, and industry trends—then craft timely legal alerts to keep clients up to date on legal developments important to their business.

November 22, 2023

New York Adult Survivors Act Set to Expire

On November 24, 2023, the lookback window for the Adult Survivors Act (ASA), which was signed by New York State Governor Kathy Hochul on May 24, 2022, and went into effect on November 24, 2022, is set to expire. The ASA amended the New York Civil Practice Law and Rules by adding a provision that revived claims of sexual abuse, thereby allowing victims who were at least 18 years old at the time the abuse occurred to bring suit. Specifically, the ASA allowed adult victims of sexual assault to bring suit during a one-year lookback period regardless of whether the statute of limitations had already expired on their claim.

The law also permitted victims who were previously time-barred from bringing an action to file suit. Further, it permitted victims who had their cases dismissed for failure to file a notice of claim to bring a new action against the perpetrator(s).

Since the ASA went into effect, over 2,500 cases of sexual abuse were filed with the courts. Employers and institutions comprise a portion of these lawsuits; however, the majority of the lawsuits filed under the ASA have been against the State of New York, the City of New York, and local counties. Many of the lawsuits for sexual abuse that have been brought against government entities were for allegations of abuse in local jails and state prisons. 

With the lookback window expiring, the previous statute of limitation rules for these types of sexual abuse claims will go back into effect. For an intentional tort claim, the statute of limitations will revert back to one year. For negligence claims, the statute of limitations will revert back to three years. The clock on these claims begins to run from the date the abuse occurred. 

Barclay Damon will continue to monitor changes in law relating to the ASA. Our attorneys have significant experience with respect to the liability, damage, and insurance coverage issues pertaining to these claims.

If you have questions regarding the content of this alert, please contact Samantha McDermott, associate, at smcdermott@barclaydamon.com; Matthew Larkin, Torts & Products Liability Defense Practice Area chair, at mlarkin@barclaydamon.com; or another member of the firm’s Torts & Products Liability Defense Practice Area.
 

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