New law extends statute of limitations for filing of sex abuse lawsuits


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BOSTON — A Boston lawyer who represents victims of childhood sexual abuse is calling a change in state law a step in the right direction.

Gov. Deval Patrick recently signed legislation that would extend the statute of limitations for filing civil lawsuits against alleged perpetrators.

Individuals who previously had only until age 21 to sue would now have until age 53.

Attorney Mitchell Garabedian said the law will help victims seek justice, but expressed disappointment it would not allow people older than 21 to retroactively sue those who supervised their alleged abusers or the institutions that employed them.

The new law also extends from three years to seven the period in which a lawsuit can be filed after the recovery of repressed memories of childhood abuse.

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