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Bill Detail: SB21-073

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Title Civil Action Statute Of Limitations Sexual Assault
Status Governor Signed (04/15/2021)
Bill Subjects
  • Civil Law
House Sponsors D. Michaelson Jenet (D)
M. Soper (R)
Senate Sponsors D. Coram (R)
J. Danielson (D)
House Committee Judiciary
Senate Committee Health and Human Services
Date Introduced 02/16/2021
Summary

Under existing law, the statute of limitations to bring a civil claim
based on sexual assault or a sexual offense against a child is 6 years, but
the statute is tolled when the victim is a person under disability or is in a

special relationship with the perpetrator of the assault. The bill defines
sexual misconduct and removes the limitation on bringing a civil claim
based on sexual misconduct, including derivative claims and claims
brought against a person or entity that is not the perpetrator of the sexual
misconduct. The statutory period to commence a civil action described in
the bill applies to a cause of action that accrues on or after January 1,
2022, or a cause of action accruing prior to January 1, 2022, so long as
the applicable statute of limitations has not yet run as of January 1, 2022.
The bill removes the provision that a plaintiff who is a victim of
a series of sexual assaults does not need to establish which act in the
series caused the plaintiff's injuries.
Under existing law, the filing of a claim alleging sexual
misconduct by a person under disability is deemed a limited waiver of the
doctor- or psychologist-patient privilege. The bill eliminates the limited
waiver.
Under existing law, a plaintiff who brings a civil action alleging
sexual misconduct 15 years or more after the plaintiff turns 18 is limited
to recovering only certain damages. The bill eliminates this restriction.
Under existing law, a victim who is a person under disability or is
in a special relationship with the perpetrator of the assault may not bring
an action against a defendant who is deceased or incapacitated. The bill
eliminates this restriction.
Under existing law, a claim for negligence in the practice of
medicine that is based on a sexual assault is exempt from the statute of
limitations for claims involving sexual assault and instead is subject to the
same limitation as any other claim for negligence in the practice of
medicine. The bill removes this exemption.

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