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New Arizona law doesn’t end effort to extend sex abuse lawsuit time limits

Arizona state Sen. Paul Boyer says he's not done trying to extend the statute of limitations for child sex abuse victims to sue their attackers. (KTAR News Photo/Peter Samore)

PHOENIX — Arizona’s legislative session is over, but the fight to give child sex abuse victims more time to sue their attackers will continue next year.

The bill Gov. Doug Ducey signed into law Monday does expand the statute of limitations from age 20 by 10 years.

“While age 30 is a win, victims just aren’t ready in their 20s to come forward,” state Sen. Paul Boyer (R-North Phoenix) said. “There’s still more work to be done.”

Boyer says victims come forward, on average, at age 48.

But he appreciates the compromise law that also gives other child sex abuse victims who termed out under statute the next 18 months to file suit.

“The only way to expose current child predators is through adults who come forward and expose them for who they are,” Boyer said.

Boyer threatened not to vote on the state budget without HB 2466, sponsored by state Rep. Walter Blackman (R-Snowflake).

In a signing statement, Ducey called the new law “an important first step to providing victims of child sexual abuse with the safety, healing and justice they deserve.”

Ducey also said we will be forming The Justice for Victims of Child Sexual Abuse Task Force.

Boyer had proposed a bill that would allow victims seven years from when they recalled the sex abuse they suffered as children to bring a civil lawsuit against their attackers.

That bill never got a hearing, with critics citing it would harm statutes of limitations and produce lawsuits that lacked evidence from cases that were too old.

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