ALASKA

CHILD SEX ABUSE SOLs

CURRENT CIVIL SOL

In Alaska, there is no civil SOL for sexual abuse/assault, trafficking or exploitation claims against perpetrators,  age 21 or 3 years from discovery for some others claims against perpetrators, and for the remaining child sex abuse claims against all defendants it is age 20 or 2 years from discovery.  

CIVIL SOL SNAPSHOT

AGE CAP

NONE AGAINST PERPETRATOR FOR FELONY SEX ABUSE/ASSAULT, SEX TRAFFICKING OR EXPLOITATION

AGE 21 AGAINST PERPETRATOR FOR MANY SEX ABUSE CRIMES

AGE 20 AGAINST PERPETRATOR FOR REMAINING CRIMES AND FOR CLAIMS AGAINST OTHER DEFENDANTS

DISCOVERY TOLLING

2-3 YEARS

REVIVAL LAW

NONE

 

Changes Since 2002:

Age Cap: In 1990 Alaska’s SOL for claims against perpetrators for sexual abuse of a minor under age 16, was age 21 (age of majority, 18, plus 3 years). Any remaining claims against perpetrators and other defendants expired at age 20 (age of majority, 18, plus 2 years). In 2001, Alaska eliminated the civil SOL for claims against a perpetrator for felony sexual abuse of a minor and sexual assault. In 2003, the SOL for actions against perpetrators was extended to age 21 (age of majority, 18, plus 3 years) for incest, felony indecent exposure or misdemeanor sexual abuse of a minor or misdemeanor sexual assault. The civil SOL for claims against a perpetrator for unlawful exploitation of a minor was eliminated in 2003, and for felony sex trafficking, in 2013

Discovery: Alaska has a common law discovery rule that applies to claims from at least as far back as the 1950s, which provides that the 2-year SOL doesn’t accrue, or begin to run, until “a reasonable person has enough information to alert that person that he or she has a potential cause of action or should begin an inquiry to protect his or her rights.” This common law discovery rule applies to claims against all types of defendants, including entities and the government. There is a narrow statute of repose that can limit the discovery rule to 10 years after the abuse but only if the claim does not result from an intentional act, gross negligence, fraud, misrepresentation, or breach of trust or fiduciary duty. In 1990, Alaska added a statutory discovery rule of 3 years from discovery of when the act caused the injury or condition, only for claims against a perpetrator of sexual abuse of a minor under age 16. Alaska courts have not yet interpreted the discovery provisions of this statute. Alaska eliminated the civil SOL for claims against a perpetrator for felony sexual abuse of a minor and sexual assault in 2001, unlawful exploitation in 2003, and felony sex trafficking in 2013, and so a discovery rule is no longer applicable or necessary for these claims.

Revival Law:  Alaska has not passed a window or other SOL revival legislation.

CURRENT ALASKA CIVIL LAW

Alaska Stat. Ann. § 09.10.065 - Commencement of actions for acts constituting sexual offenses

(a) A person may bring an action at any time for conduct that would have, at the time the conduct occurred, violated provisions of any of the following offenses:

(1) felony sexual abuse of a minor;

(2) felony sexual assault;

(3) unlawful exploitation of a minor;

(4) felony sex trafficking; or

(5) felony human trafficking.

(b) Unless the action is commenced within three years of the accrual of the claim for relief, a person may not bring an action for conduct that would have, at the time the conduct occurred, violated the provisions of any of the following offenses:

(1) misdemeanor sexual abuse of a minor;

(2) misdemeanor sexual assault;

(3) incest; or

(4) felony indecent exposure.

Alaska Stat. Ann. § 09.10.140 - Disabilities of minority and incompetency

(a) Except as provided under (c) of this section, if a person entitled to bring an action mentioned in this chapter is at the time the cause of action accrues either (1) under the age of majority, or (2) incompetent by reason of mental illness or mental disability, the time of a disability identified in (1) or (2) of this subsection is not a part of the time limit for the commencement of the action. Except as provided in (b) of this section, the period within which the action may be brought is not extended in any case longer than two years after the disability ceases.

(b) An action based on a claim of sexual abuse under AS 09.55.650 that is subject to AS 09.10.065(b) may be brought more than three years after the plaintiff reaches the age of majority if it is brought under the following circumstances:

(1) if the claim asserts that the defendant committed one act of sexual abuse on the plaintiff, the plaintiff shall commence the action within three years after the plaintiff discovered or through use of reasonable diligence should have discovered that the act caused the injury or condition;

(2) if the claim asserts that the defendant committed more than one act of sexual abuse on the plaintiff, the plaintiff shall commence the action within three years after the plaintiff discovered or through use of reasonable diligence should have discovered the effect of the injury or condition attributable to the series of acts; a claim based on an assertion of more than one act of sexual abuse is not limited to plaintiff’s first discovery of the relationship between any one of those acts and the injury or condition, but may be based on plaintiff’s discovery of the effect of the series of acts.

(c) In an action for personal injury of a person who was under the age of eight years at the time of the injury, the time period before the person’s eighth birthday is not a part of the time limit imposed under AS 09.10.070(a)  for commencing the civil action.

Alaska Stat. Ann. § 09.55.650 - Claim based on sexual abuse to a minor under 16 years of age

(a) A person who, as a minor under 16 years of age, was the victim of sexual abuse may maintain an action for recovery of damages against the perpetrator of the act or acts of sexual abuse based on the perpetrator’s intentional conduct for an injury or condition suffered as a result of the sexual abuse.

(b) If the defendant committed more than one act of sexual abuse on the plaintiff, the plaintiff is not required to prove which specific act caused the injury.

(c) In this section, “sexual abuse” means an act committed by the defendant against the plaintiff maintaining the cause of action if the defendant’s conduct would have violated a provision of AS 11.41.410–11.41.440 or 11.41.450–11.41.458, former AS 11.15.120, 11.15.134, or 11.15.160, or former AS 11.40.110 at the time it was committed.

Case law

Reasner v. State Dep’t of Health & Soc. Servs., 394 P.3d 610, 614 (Alaska 2017): Common law discovery rule for child sex abuse claims

CURRENT CRIMINAL SOL

There is currently no SOL in Alaska for most child sex abuse crimes, with an SOL of 5 years for remaining felonies and misdemeanors.  

CRIMINAL SOL SNAPSHOT

5OTHER FELNOIES

SEXUAL ABUSE OF A MINOR

 NO SOL Alaska Stat. Ann. § 12.10.010(a)(3)

FELONY SEXUAL ASSAULT

 NO SOL Alaska Stat. Ann. §§ 12.10.010(a)(4) and (a)(6)

MISDEMEANOR SEXUAL ASSAULT

NO SOL Alaska Stat. Ann. § 12.10.010(a)(5)

INCEST

 NO SOL Alaska Stat. Ann. § 12.10.010(a)(5)

ONLINE ENTICEMENT OF A MINOR

NO SOL Alaska Stat. Ann. § 12.10.010(a)(5)

UNLAWFUL EXPLOITATION OF A MINOR

NO SOL Alaska Stat. Ann. § 12.10.010(a)(5)

INDECENT EXPOSURE

NO SOL Alaska Stat. Ann. § 12.10.010(a)(5)

DISTRIBUTION OF CHILD PORNOGRAPHY

NO SOL Alaska Stat. Ann. § 12.10.010(a)(7)

FELONY SEX TRAFFICKING

 NO SOL Alaska Stat. Ann. §§ 12.10.010(a)(5) & (a)(8)

FELONY HUMAN TRAFFICKING

 NO SOL Alaska Stat. Ann. §§ 12.10.010(a)(5) & (a)(9)

MISDEMEANORS

 5 YEARS FROM OFFENSE Alaska Stat. Ann. § 12.10.010(b)(2)

 

DNA SNAPSHOT

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NO DNA STATUTE


 

Changes Since 2002:

By 2001 Alaska had eliminated the criminal SOL for felony sexual abuse of a minor, sex trafficking, and many other crimes involving child sex abuse, including misdemeanor sexual assault in the fourth degree.  Other felonies and misdemeanors had an SOL of 5 years from the crime.  In 2013 it removed the SOL for more felonies, including child pornography and sex trafficking of a person age 18-20. 

CURRENT ALASKA CRIMINAL LAW

Alaska Stat. Ann. § 12.10.010 - General time limitations

(a) Prosecution for the following offenses may be commenced at any time:

(1) murder;

(2) attempt, solicitation, or conspiracy to commit murder or hindering the prosecution of murder;

(3) felony sexual abuse of a minor;

(4) sexual assault that is an unclassified, class A, or class B felony or a violation of AS 11.41.425(a)(2)–(4);

(5) a violation of AS 11.41.425, 11.41.427, 11.41.450–11.41.458, AS 11.66.110–11.66.130, or former AS 11.41.430, when committed against a person who, at the time of the offense, was under 18 years of age;

(6) kidnapping;

(7) distribution of child pornography in violation of AS 11.61.125;

(8) sex trafficking in violation of AS 11.66.110–11.66.130 that is an unclassified, class A, or class B felony or that is committed against a person who, at the time of the offense, was under 20 years of age;

(9) human trafficking in violation of AS 11.41.360 or 11.41.365.

(b) Except as otherwise provided by law or in (a) of this section, a person may not be prosecuted, tried, or punished for an offense unless the indictment is found or the information or complaint is instituted not later than

(1) 10 years after the commission of a felony offense in violation of AS 11.41.120–11.41.330, 11.41.425(a)(1), 11.41.425(a)(5), 11.41.425(a)(6), or 11.41.450–11.41.458; or

(2) five years after the commission of any other offense.




Case Law

The information provided is solely for informational purposes and is not legal advice. To determine the Alaska SOL in a particular case, contact a lawyer in the state.

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