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Blackburn-introduced bill removing statute of limitations for child sexual abuse offenses passes Congress

Bill first introduced by Sens. Blackburn, Durbin
White House
Posted at 10:22 AM, Sep 15, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-16 09:26:50-04

(WTVF) — A bill removing the statute of limitations for reporting child sexual abuse will head to President Joe Biden's desk.

This new legislation will update current federal laws which set the statute of limitation for child sexual abuse claims until the victim reaches the age of 28 or until 10 years from the discovery of the offense.

The Eliminating Limits to Justice for Child Sex Abuse Victims Act of 2021 was first introduced by Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tennessee, and Democratic Majority Whip Dick Durbin, D-Illinois.

"The statute of limitations for sexual abuse offenses should never prohibit young survivors from getting the justice they deserve," Blackburn said. "The bipartisan effort to eliminate the civil child sexual abuse statute of limitations is a critical step to guarantee survivors their day in court."

It unanimously passed the U.S. Senate earlier this year and was passed in the U.S. House of Representatives this week.

"The science of trauma is clear: it often takes years for victims to come forward," Durbin said. "Our bipartisan bill honors the basic notions of justice for survivors, and I was proud to work with Senator Blackburn and our colleagues in the House to lead it across the finish line. By signing this legislation into law, we can finally help survivors have their day in court and a moment of healing—when they are ready."

Its passing will impact crime reports going forward as well as any reports that would have reached the statute of limitations under previous law.