On May 27, 2020, the New York Legislature voted to extend the lookback window of the Child Victims Act (CVA) for an additional year until August 14, 2021. This passage happened quickly in response to criticism that Gov. Cuomo exceeded his executive authority in issuing an Executive Order that extended the CVA lookback window until January 14, 2021.
Advocates rooted for the one-year extension as a way to provide victims of childhood sexual abuse with more time to file their claims once the courts start to slowly open after being closed for months following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Victims Need More Time to File CVA Claims
The Child Victims Act, which was signed into law on January 28, 2019, originally provided a one-year lookback window until August 14, 2020 for victims to file claims. As a result of the coronavirus outbreak, the New York State Office of Court Administration (OCA) issued an order suspending the filing of all non-essential claims, including claims within the CVA window.
Although Gov. Cuomo issued an executive order suspending specific time limits for the commencement, filing or service of any legal actions, CVA advocates were concerned that these orders did not include actions filed under the CVA lookback window.
Extending the lookback window under the CVA is necessary because of the reduced court services prompted by the outbreak of COVID-19. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, one year was simply not enough time for victims of childhood sexual abuse to file claim. Now that pandemic has upturned nearly every aspect of life, survivors need even more time to file claims.
If you or a loved one is the victim of child sexual abuse, you need to know how the Child Victims Act can help you get the justice you deserve. For more information or to better understand how this law can help you, please call our professional help center at 212-385-4410.