Sexual abuse statute of limitations bill held

The Senate held from a vote a bill that gives sexual abuse victims more time to seek justice in civil courts.

S1651  would remove the statute of limitations regarding civil actions over sexual abuse.

Sponsor Sen. Joe Vitale, expressing frustration, said he did not expect the bill would be changed between now and the next voting session.

He said there were four Democratic senators absent today, and he was not entirely sure where all of the Republican votes would fall, so they held the bill for now.

He did say that some had concerns with the retroactive nature of the bill.

In general, a lawsuit has to be filed within two years of the alleged incident. The bill would remove that limitation to afford victims as many avenues of remedy as possible.

The bill also would amend the law so that charitable organizations such as religious associations could be held liable for acts of abuse.