TITLE 9
Courts and Civil Procedure – Procedure Generally

CHAPTER 9-1
Causes of Action

SECTION 9-1-51


§ 9-1-51. Limitation on actions based on sexual abuse or exploitation of a child.

(a)(1) All claims or causes of action brought against a perpetrator defendant by any person for recovery of damages for injury suffered as a result of sexual abuse shall be commenced within the later to expire of:

(i) Thirty-five (35) years of the act alleged to have caused the injury or condition; or

(ii) Seven (7) years from the time the victim discovered or reasonably should have discovered that the injury or condition was caused by the act.

Provided, however, that the time limit or commencement of such an action under this section shall be tolled for a child until the child reaches eighteen (18) years of age. For the purposes of this section, "sexual abuse" shall have the same meaning as in subsection (e) of this section.

(2) All claims or causes of action brought against a non-perpetrator defendant by any person alleging negligent supervision of a person that sexually abused a minor, or that the non-perpetrator defendant's conduct caused or contributed to the childhood sexual abuse by another person to include, but not be limited to, wrongful conduct, neglect or default in supervision, hiring, employment, training, monitoring, or failure to report and/or the concealment of sexual abuse of a child shall be commenced within the later to expire of:

(i) Thirty-five (35) years of the act or acts alleged to have caused an injury or condition to the minor; or

(ii) Seven (7) years from the time the victim discovered or reasonably should have discovered that the injury or condition was caused by the act.

Provided, however, that the time limit or commencement of such an action under this section shall be tolled for a child until the child reaches eighteen (18) years of age.

For purposes of this section "sexual abuse" shall have the same meaning as in subsection (e) of this section.

(3) As to a perpetrator defendant, any claim or cause of action based on conduct of sexual abuse may be commenced within the time period enumerated in subsections (a)(1)(i) and (a)(1)(ii) regardless if the claim was time-barred under previous version of the general laws.

(4) Except as provided in subsection (a)(3) herein, any claim or cause of action based on conduct of sexual abuse or conduct that caused or contributed to sexual abuse, if the action is not otherwise time-barred under previous version of the general laws on the effective date of this section, may be commenced within the time period enumerated in subsections (a)(l) and (a)(2) of this section.

(b) The victim need not establish which act in a series of continuing sexual abuse or exploitation incidents cause the injury complained of, but may compute the date of discovery from the date of the last act by the same perpetrator which is part of a common scheme or plan of sexual abuse or exploitation.

(c) The knowledge of a custodial parent or guardian shall not be imputed to a person under the age of eighteen (18) years.

(d) For purposes of this section, "child" means a person under the age of eighteen (18) years.

(e) As used in this section, "sexual abuse" means any act committed by the defendant against a complainant who was less than eighteen (18) years of age at the time of the act and which act would have been a criminal violation of chapter 37 of title 11.

History of Section.
(P.L. 1992, ch. 84, § 1; P.L. 1993, ch. 274, § 1; P.L. 2019, ch. 82, § 1; P.L. 2019, ch. 83, § 1.)