California AB-218 Gives Hopes to Child Sex Abuse Victims
Assembly Bill 218 was introduced in January 2019 by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez. The legislation was introduced following widespread allegations of abuse of minors by Catholic priests as well as the 2018 conviction of Larry Nassar, a former U.S. Olympic gymnastics team doctor, for molesting young athletes. The measure had support from gymnastic athletes who were victims of Nassar, who was sentenced 40 to 125 years in prison after more than 260 women and girls came forward with assault allegations against him that dated to the early 1990s.
Governor Gavin Newsom singed the legislation into law on October 14, 2019. This historic legislation expands protections for childhood victims of sexual assault who are now adults. The new law gives these survivors the opportunity to file a civil claim for money damages that was previously barred by California’s restrictive statute of limitations.
The Details of California AB-218
AB-218 extends the statute of limitations for reporting childhood sexual assault from the time a victim is age 26 to age 40, and increases the period for delayed reasonable discovery from three to five years.
The bill also provides a window of three years for the revival of past claims that might have expired due to the statute of limitations. Furthermore, under AB-218, damages can be trebled in cases in which a child becomes a victim of sexual assault as the result of an effort to cover up at past assaults.
The new law allows lawsuits to be filed starting January 1, 2020.
New Hope for Child Sex Abuse Victims
Above all, AB-218 gives hope for victims recovering from childhood sexual abuse, which can be a long, complicated and often troubling journey. For most child sex abuse victims, being able to file a civil claim is not just about the monetary compensation. It is about getting justice against their attacker and the institution that protected them. Filing a civil claim can also act as a closure. It helps sexual victims close that chapter of their lives and move on with their healing process.
Los Angeles Child Sex Abuse Attorney
If you or a loved one has been the victim of child sexual abuse, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. Although no amount of money will undo the harm caused, it can bring a sense of justice and closure for victims. For more information or to consult with an experienced LA child sex abuse attorney, please call The Carrillo Law Firm at 626-799-9375.