Arizona Lawmakers Near Deal On Sex Abuse Bill, Clearing Budget Hurdle

Published: Thursday, May 23, 2019 - 8:07am
Updated: Thursday, May 23, 2019 - 9:05am
Howard Fischer/Capital Media Services
Sen. Paul Boyer.

The budget stalemate at the Arizona Capitol appears to be giving way over the statute of limitations for victims to file a lawsuit if they were sexually abused as a child.

Senator Paul Boyer, R-Phoenix, says key lawmakers tentatively agreed Wednesday to give victims up until age 35 to file. That’s 15 years longer than current law allows.

Changes to his proposal also include protecting businesses from being sued unless certain circumstances exist.

"There's language in there that says the institution had to know of a sexual assault in their institution and it was either not acted upon or covered up," Boyer said.

Boyer had originally aimed for no age limit, but compromised as long as victims who are older have a one-year "window" to file suit.

He has argued that research shows the average victim does not report what happened until age 48.

If legislative leadership accepts the changes, it would remove Boyer’s threat to hold up voting on the $1.8 billion budget.

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