The 2024 Hawaii Legislature is considering bills to enlarge the time limit for filing civil lawsuits for incidents of sexual abuse. Two bills (SB2601 and HB1968) propose to increase the time limit for filing claims arising from acts of sexual abuse of a child up to the survivor’s 50th birthday. This is progress. However, it should be noted that the bills, as currently worded, do not revive any claims in which the current time limit has already run, leaving many adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse without the ability to seek justice.
The Legislature is also considering a bill (SB2439) to open a one year window for survivors of sexual abuse that happened to them as adults to bring claims against perpetrators and organizations. This change would provide a limited opportunity to survivors who had been left out of prior window laws which addressed childhood sexual abuse only.
If you care about these issues, make your voice heard at the Legislature. You can get more information and submit testimony at www.capitol.hawaii.gov.