Utah Sexual Abuse Lawsuits


Utah’s civil statute of limitations (SOL) laws appear to be very victim friendly in providing survivors of childhood sexual abuse an avenue to justice. However, the civil SOL that applies to entities that may have enabled or covered up the sexual abuse, like the Catholic Church, is extremely short, making it much less victim friendly than other states around the country. SOL laws enable lawyers handling sexual abuse claims in Utah to file cases against sexual predators, including clergy members, and the Catholic Church.

Below you will find information on Utah’s statute of limitations laws. These laws are important because they dictate how long a lawyer handling Utah sexual assault cases has to file a claim on behalf of a survivor. In addition, we’ve compiled a list of Utah settlements received by sexual abuse and assault survivors and a list of Utah’s ‘credibly’ accused priests released by Utah’s Dioceses.

Utah Statute of Limitations for Sexual Abuse & Assault

Based on the language of the statute, Utah appears to have made great progress towards helping survivors of sexual abuse get civil justice. However, the state’s civil SOL has only been eliminated against individuals who committed the sexual abuse. The civil SOL for an entity who may have enabled the abuse is capped at age 22, which is on the low end of the spectrum when compared to many other states, and means Utah could be doing much more to help survivors.

Criminal Statute of Limitations Laws for Utah

In Utah, there is no criminal SOL for most child sex abuse felonies. The SOL for misdemeanors is 2 years after the offense. Child USA, who has evaluated every state based on its criminal statute of limitations laws, gave Utah a Criminal SOL score of 3, on a 1-5 scale, where 5 is the highest. A score of 3 is defined as an elimination of the criminal SOL for some/all felonies only.

Civil Statute of Limitations Laws for Utah

In Utah, there is no civil SOL for claims against perpetrators of child sex abuse. Claims for sexual assault of a child against other types of defendants are capped at age 22. There is a 4-year discovery rule which begins when “the plaintiff learns of, or in the exercise of reasonable diligence should have learned of, the facts that give rise to the cause of action.” Child USA, who has also evaluated every state based on its civil statute of limitations laws, gave Utah a Civil SOL Age Cap score of 5, on a 1-5 scale, where 5 is the highest. A score of 5 is defined as no civil SOL age cap or an eliminated SOL.

If you or someone you love was sexually abused or assaulted in Utah, contact us now. Due to Utah’s current laws, including its discovery rule, those sexually abused as a minor may still have a claim against their abuser, depending on how long ago the abuse occurred. Even if the abuser is deceased, you may still have a claim against the organization responsible.

Go to our main sexual abuse page to learn more about the process of filing a clergy sexual abuse claim.

Utah Sexual Abuse Settlements

2004 – In 2004, Bishop George H. Niederauer released a statement saying from 1950-2002 there were 18 credible allegations of sexual abuse against 13 priests in the diocese. Most of the allegations stemmed from abuse that occurred between 1963 and 1984. Niederauer made it a point to say that no settlements had been made in regards to allegations of clergy sexual abuse. The one lawsuit filed against the diocese had been dismissed because the statute of limitations had passed on the claim.

*The settlements listed above are offered for educational purposes only and do not guarantee any future outcome or settlement. Each legal situation is different, and past performance does not guarantee future results. We do not maintain that is a full list of all settlements in the state of Utah but merely a grouping of those we choose to share on our website. Please contact us if you would like additional settlements included or if you notice any inaccuracies on our site. We strive to provide our viewers the most up to date and accurate information as possible.

Utah Catholic Diocese Releases Names of Clergy Credibly Accused of Sexual Abuse of Children

On September 20, 2019, the Diocese of Salt Lake City released the names of priests and clergy members who they deemed to be ‘credibly accused’ of sexual abuse of a child.

The list below will be updated as litigation or investigations are concluded so that new names of credibly accused priests in Utah can be added.

Diocese of Salt Lake City Credibly Accused Priest List

Click to view our larger database of accused priest. Here you can search by accused clergy first and last name, Parish/Diocese, city and state, and even by the years of their assignments.

Utah Sexual Abuse Lawsuits: News & Updates

Check back for recent news related to Utah’s sexual abuse and assault laws.

top