Hochul signs 3 bills to empower victims of crime
Press Release, Gov. Kathy Hochul’s Office
Governor Kathy Hochul has signed a legislative package to empower victims of crime. This sweeping package of bills expands what qualifies as documentation of identity theft and expands the eligibility of victims of unlawful dissemination of intimate images, as well as reckless endangerment. These bills will help to lift up victims of these heinous acts and give them the opportunity to seek justice.
“In New York we believe strongly in protecting and uplifting all victims,” Governor Hochul said. “This legislative package allows victims that have not been physically injured to still obtain compensation for other impacts of various crimes – taking an important step to help victims seek the justice they deserve.”
- Legislation (S.9359/A.7487) expands which documents can be used to show identity theft in certain circumstances relating to debt collection. These materials can now include Federal Trade Commission and Law enforcement reports, as well as criminal and family court documents. This increases protection for victims of identity theft by requiring creditors to cease collection activities until completion of their review of certain information. Under existing law, victims of identity theft must have filed a police report for a creditor to cease collection, with there being no alternative if a police report was not filed. This will allow more victims of identity theft to put these heinous acts behind them.
- Legislation (S.8975/A.7489) expands the eligibility of victims of unlawful dissemination or publication of an intimate image as defined in section 245.15 of the Penal Law (Revenge Porn). Under current law, to be eligible for reimbursement for certain crime-related expenses, one must be a physically injured victim of a crime. This bill allows uninjured victims of unlawful dissemination of intimate images to be reimbursed. This gives more power to victims of revenge porn acts and allows them to collect damages for what they endured.
- Legislation (S.8976/A.7502) expands the eligibility of victims of the crimes of reckless endangerment in the second and first degree. Under current law, to be eligible for reimbursement victims must be physically injured by reckless endangerment. This bill allows victims the ability to obtain compensation without having been physically injured, giving victims more power.