Illinois Statute of Limitations and Sex Abuse Civil Suits

If you are a survivor of sexual abuse or assault and you are interested in bringing a civil lawsuit against your abuser or those who allowed the abuse to continue, you are probably wondering if you need to file your claim within a certain amount of time, or if too much time has already passed since the abuse.

Fortunately, though often complex, Illinois law provides for relatively lengthy and indefinite filing deadlines for civil cases involving sexual abuse. Continue reading to learn more.

How the Statute of Limitations Has Changed

Formerly, anyone over the age of eighteen who had been sexually abused or assaulted faced a statute of limitations of two to twenty years for filing a civil claim in Illinois, beginning on the date of the incident or the day the victim discovered they had been sexually abused.

If the statute of limitations passed and a civil suit had not been filed, victims were, more often than not, barred from seeking compensation for their physical injuries and emotional trauma.

Civil lawsuits relating to major sex crimes such as criminal sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual assault, or predatory criminal sexual assault are not subject to any filing deadline or statute of limitations. Because victims so frequently discover repressed memories of abuse later in life, Illinois law now allows them to pursue civil damages without having to be concerned that time will run out.

Remaining Time Limits for Sexual Abuse Lawsuits

However, the extended statute of limitations for major sex crimes does not apply to abuse that occurred before the new law was enacted. The previous statute of limitations of twenty years for civil claims related to childhood sexual abuse may still apply in these cases.

Because changes in the law can complicate the Illinois statute of limitations for child sex abuse civil suits, it’s particularly important to discuss your situation with a qualified, trustworthy lawyer. Your attorney can make sure you file on time, boost your chance of winning the compensation you deserve, and handle your case with respect and sensitivity.

Discuss Your Case with a Chicago Sexual Abuse Lawyer

If you’re considering a civil lawsuit against your abuser and have questions about meeting Illinois statutes of limitations, speak with an experienced Chicago sexual abuse lawyer at Lane & Lane, LLC.

We will work tirelessly to secure the compensation you need to regain control of your life. You can schedule a free, no-obligation consultation today by calling our office at 312-332-1400 or filling out the quick contact form below.

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