ALBANY, N.Y. (WENY) – Wednesday, a key part of the Child Victims Act will go into effect in New York State, allowing sexual abuse victims to pursue justice in civil court.

During the one-year look-back window, the statute of limitations will be lifted for one year, allowing sexual abuse victims of any age to file a civil lawsuit in New York State, even if the abuse happened decades ago.

Though officials say many cases will come against the Catholic Church, survivors can also file lawsuits against people such as family members, or institutions like schools, sports organizations and groups like the Boy Scouts.

Recently, hundreds of victims in New York State alone have come forward, alleging abuse and cover-up attempts that happened in the Catholic Church and the Boy Scouts of America.

As WENY News reported, the Child Victims Act sat in the state legislature for years before being signed in late January. Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the bill into law on Valentine's Day.