California’s Latest Legal Change Reduces a Significant Barrier to Suing Rapists

California prides itself in having many survivor-friendly laws and in 2019 announced its much-hyped 10-year statute of limitations for civil remedies for adult survivors of sexual assault. Too many survivors have not benefited from this 2019 law (CCP 340.16).

But, as of Jan. 1, 2023, CCP 340.16 clearly outlines that the 10-year statute of limitations applies retroactively to sexual assaults that occurred before the statute was first enacted on Jan. 1, 2019. To rectify prior confusion, the amended statute provides for a three-year window, until Dec. 31, 2025, wherein survivors can file their civil claims for sexual assaults that occurred on or after Jan. 1, 2009.