Adult Survivors of Sexual Assault Can Now Sue Under Recent Law in New York

Adult Survivors of Sexual Assault Can Now Sue Under Recent Law in New York

Sexual abuse survivors in New York have a new opportunity to seek justice against their perpetrators. The New York Adult Survivors Act will now allow adult survivors of sexual assault to take legal action in the state. Under this law, individuals can still file claims even if the statute of limitations has expired. The law, which went into effect on November 24, opens a one-year window for survivors to sue their abusers. Also, the law grants people sexually assaulted in jail or at work the chance to sue the entity. Like the New York Child Victims Act of 2019, attorneys anticipate this new law will generate thousands of sexual abuse lawsuits

What Is the New York Adult Survivors Act?

New York Governor Kathy Hochul signed the New York Adult Survivors Act into law in May 2022. The new law opens a twelve-month period for survivors of sexual abuse to file lawsuits starting November 24, 2022. State Senator Brad Hoylman and Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal sponsored the act, which gives sexual abuse survivors a one-year lookback window to assert their claims. 

This law means that lawsuits previously barred by time through the statute of limitations can proceed. Many have criticized the statute of limitations regarding sexual abuse claims, stating it does not account for the long-term trauma of victims. Survivors may feel scared to come forward or may not realize they suffered sexual abuse until years later. This act empowers survivors to file claims until November 2023, regardless of the time of the incident. The law encompasses 20 crimes listed under New York’s Penal Law on sex crimes and incest. Some examples of the crimes that apply to the Adult Survivors Act include forcible touching, rape, sexual abuse, and sexual misconduct. 

ASA Extends to Workplace and Institutional Sexual Assault Claims

Under the Adult Survivors Act, survivors of sexual assault at their workplace or in institutions like a jail or hospital can also file claims. Survivors can hold employers or those of employment relationships accountable for sexual assault in the workplace. Also, attorneys predict women sexually abused in New York state prisons to follow lawsuits given the new law. Attorneys have cited the power imbalance between prisoners and guards accompanying incarceration for the anticipated lawsuits. Additionally, 40 women with new claims against Columbia University gynecologist Dr. Robert Hadden may file lawsuits under the ASA.

Lawsuits Already Filed Under the New Act 

The New York Child Victims Act brought forth roughly 11,000 sexual assault lawsuits. Meanwhile, the newly established ASA could also produce a similar number of claims. Former magazine columnist E. Jean Carroll immediately filed a lawsuit against Donald Trump following the implementation of the ASA on November 24. 

Carroll is suing Trump for battery and defamation. She alleges that Trump raped her in a New York department store dressing room in the mid-1990s. Carroll previously filed a lawsuit against Trump for defamation in 2019 after he publicly denied the rape allegations. The Adult Survivors Act has permitted Carroll to add battery charges to her recently filed claim. 

How The Lake Law Firm Can Help You

Are you a survivor of sexual assault? If so, The Lake Law Firm can partner with you to file a lawsuit against the responsible party. We understand that pursuing a sexual assault lawsuit can be intimidating. However, our devoted team will create a safe environment to assist you in securing justice against the perpetrator. Recounting the details of your experience may prove challenging, but we will support you and work with you at a comfortable pace. 

The Lake Law Firm was founded by Edward J. Lake, Esq., a personal injury lawyer for over 25 years. Our dedicated team of attorneys is committed to seeking justice on behalf of those who have suffered injury or death due to the negligence of others. Our experienced attorneys handle many different types of pharmaceutical drugs, medical devices, and other defective products. The lawyers in our firm have helped collect millions of dollars for their clients. The Lake Law Firm will advocate for you and your rights. Please contact us for a free confidential case evaluation at (888) 274-0139.