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Retroactive push to suspend abuse-suit deadlines in New York

Inviting million-dollar claims based on recovered memories of events in the 1960s:

Under the version of the bill the bishop opposes, any plaintiffs, regardless of age, would have a one-year period to sue over child-abuse charges that took place at any point in their lives, no matter how long ago.

And careful what you wish for: a major argument levied by Roman Catholic opponents of the bill was that it would reinstate long-since-lapsed suits against churches but not similarly situated public agencies. Now the bill's sponsor, Queens Democrat Margaret Markey, has announced she's going to address that disparity by extending the new litigation climate to everyone:

The change would give people who say they were abused in public schools, for example, the same opportunities to sue as those claiming abuse in religious or private schools.

Cardozo lawprof Marci Hamilton has been among major public advocates of suspending statutes of limitation; for a sampling of critical viewpoints, see First Things, Crisis/Inside Catholic, and this Queens blog. Earlier here and here. More: WSJ.

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Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy

Manhattan Institute


Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.