CVA “Look Back” Window
Apart from extending the legal deadline to file claims, the CVA opened a one-year “look back” window. Anyone in the state of New York who was sexually abused as a child could file a claim during the year. This includes victims with older, expired cases who would otherwise be unable to file a lawsuit, even according to the newer statutes.
The one-year window opened on August 14, 2019. The window was originally scheduled to close on August 13, 2020. However, the window to file was shortened due to court closures caused by COVID-19.
To remedy this, in May, Governor Cuomo announced a five-month extension for the window. Later that month, New York State lawmakers in the Senate and Assembly passed legislation to extend the “look back” window further by a year. Governor Cuomo signed this bill into law on August 3, 2020.
Under the CVA’s new “look back” window, child sexual abuse survivors may file an expired civil lawsuit in New York State courts until August 14, 2021.
This extension does not affect the deadline for victims filing claims against the Rochester Diocese. In September 2019, the Rochester Diocese filed for bankruptcy. This action suspended all sexual abuse lawsuits against the diocese. To receive compensation from the diocese, victims are required to make a claim with the bankruptcy court. Victims were required to file a bankruptcy claim against the Diocese of Rochester by August 13, 2020. This deadline was not extended to match the new “look back” window.