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Idaho

Court ruling could make it harder for abused minors to sue

An Idaho Supreme Court ruling could make it harder for juveniles molested by state officials to sue their abusers.

In Monday’s unanimous decision, the court said five men who said they were sexually abused as youths at a juvenile detention center can’t sue the state because they waited too long to file a tort claim.

The court said Idaho’s laws are written in such a way that juveniles who want to sue the state for sexual abuse may actually have a shorter period to file a tort claim compared to adults in the same situation.

Justice John Stegner wrote the ruling. He says the court is aware the decision could mean valid lawsuits are dismissed through no fault of the minor. But he says the law requires juveniles to file tort claims within six months of turning 18 or within six years of the injury, whichever comes first.

Adults must file within six months of the injury or when it was reasonably discovered, whichever comes later.

AP Only 2019

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