We understand how hard this must be for you. Child sexual abuse stands among the most vile crimes in our society. Few of us want to confront it, but in reality, childhood sexual abuse is widespread and pervasive in our culture. Some estimates suggest that up to 1 in 5 girls, and 1 in 20 boys, will be sexually abused before reaching the age of majority. Between the ages of 14 and 17, nearly 30% of children will have been sexually abused. These shocking numbers only confirm what our attorneys have known for years – something must be done.
Our Dedicated Sexual Abuse Attorneys Can Help
We stand with sexual abuse survivors. When powerful institutions like the Catholic Church conceal sexual abuse allegations and protect dangerous predators, we strive every day to force them to account for their wrongdoing and make good with survivors. When daycare centers and schools fail to adequately supervise their employers, our attorneys fight to hold them liable for their negligence. When organizations such as the US Olympic Committee foster a culture that tolerates sexual abuse, we fight back.
Contact Our Lawyers For More Information
Our dedicated legal team has been fighting on behalf of sexual abuse survivors for decades. We have the resources and experience necessary to fight for you, both in the courtroom and around the negotiating table. Trust us to handle your case. We have successfully brought to a resolution cases involving many large organizations, including the Catholic Church. You deserve to be heard. We can help you raise your voice.
Worried about the cost of pursuing a lawsuit? Our experienced attorneys only offer their services on a contingency-fee basis. That means you owe us nothing until we secure compensation in your case. If we don’t win, you pay us nothing. Your initial consultation also comes at no charge. Just contact our lawyers today for a free, confidential consultation now.
Holding Abusers, Negligent Organizations Accountable
Dangerous sexual predators seek out positions of trust and authority, roles in our society in which they can gain easy access to vulnerable children. Pedophiles are drawn to professions that grant them authority and trust, both with children and with parents.
It’s not a coincidence that so many stories of sexual abuse come to us from our schools and churches, sports clubs and summer camps. Sexual predators are actively drawn to work in these places, where they can easily arrange one-on-one time with children without arousing suspicion. Churches, schools and daycares are fertile grounds for a predator.
At the same time, these trusted positions of authority allow sexual abusers to fall back on the support of the community when allegations arise. In many cases, children who come forward to disclose sexual abuse are met by disbelief because the offender is a trusted member of the community. Many powerful roles in our society are afforded automatic trust from both children and their families. No one suspects a trusted priest of being a monster. But in many cases, our trust is misplaced.
Entering A New Era Of Justice For Survivors
There has never been a better time to fight for justice. Across the country, sexual abuse survivors are standing up to file personal injury lawsuits in droves, in large part because our culture has finally begun to admit that child sexual abuse is real. More than any other time in history, people around the globe are waking up to the reality of sexual abuse.
In the same breath, survivors throughout the nation have been empowered to step forward by a series of high-profile sexual abuse scandals that have brought their trauma to the forefront. The ongoing sexual abuse crisis in the Catholic Church, along with sexual abuse scandals in Olympic level sports, has led to a wave of personal injury lawsuits.
This effort is being led by brave sexual abuse survivors who are done staying in the shadows, people young and old who are finally ready to have their voices heard. You can join them. If you or a loved one were sexually abused by a predator, you may have the right to pursue justice and financial compensation by filing a private civil lawsuit.
Filing A Civil Lawsuit For Child Sexual Abuse
Most civil lawsuits filed over childhood sexual abuse are premised on the legal concept of negligence, because most of these lawsuits are filed against negligent third-party organizations, rather than the direct perpetrators of abuse.
The doctrine of negligence recognizes that many institutions and individuals, from doctors and daycare centers to schools and church groups, owe children a duty of care, an obligation to protect them from dangerous sexual predators. Negligence is what occurs when one of these organizations or individuals fails to uphold that duty, allowing a sexual abuser to gain access to victims through carelessness, recklessness or misconduct.
- Religious communities, including the Catholic Church – Sexual abuse is shockingly common within religious organizations, especially communities that are cut off from wider society, either by custom or geography. Like the Catholic Church, many religious communities, including the Southern Baptists and the Jehovah’s Witnesses, have a troubling history of concealing sexual abuse allegations from secular authorities.
- Schools, both public and private – While every school should be a sanctuary for students, thousands of children, from toddlers to teens, become the victims of sexual misconduct every year in public, private, boarding and religious educational programs.
- Preschools and daycares – Our youngest children should receive the utmost protection, but recent sexual abuse scandals arising in the daycare setting show that some organizations aren’t fit to care for our kids.
- Boy Scouts – While the Scout motto is “Be Prepared,” no parent can be prepared for the horror of learning that their child has been sexually abused. Yet Scouting often creates an ideal environment in which dangerous pedophiles gain access to children. In fact, recent reports suggest that the Boy Scouts of America have mishandled many past cases of molestation, even maintaining a so-called “Perversion Files” of Scout masters and volunteers who have been accused of child sexual abuse.
- Youth Sports – Whether sanctioned by one of the nation’s national governing bodies for Olympic-level competition or a pickup game in the park, youth sports programming has become a focal point for sexual abuse investigations in the past few years. Ever since the abuse of Larry Nassar, a USA Gymnastics doctor, came to light, the nation has been shocked again and again by new sexual abuse scandals from the world of youth sports. Whether as coaches, doctors, trainers or volunteers, dangerous pedophiles prey off the trust of young athletes to commit unspeakable crimes.
- Pediatricians – Over recent years, our attorneys have noticed a startling rise in the number of cases involving pediatricians abusing young patients. Many of these medical sexual abuse cases come to us from the world of colleges and schools, where predatory doctors can gain easy access to victims. Others arise in private practice or hospital settings.
Needless to say, lawsuits can also be filed against the direct perpetrators of crime, but these lawsuits are based on separate legal theories, not negligence. Civil lawsuits filed against those who commit abuse come in the form of intentional torts, civil wrongs that cause harm but are driven by the abusers intent to commit harm. Assault, battery and the intentional infliction of emotional distress are the three main intentional torts used in sexual abuse lawsuits.
New State Laws Herald Wave Of Sexual Abuse Lawsuits
As the wave of sexual abuse lawsuits has grown, even state legislators have been forced to act. In the face of widespread public pressure from sexual abuse survivors and advocates, New York made the momentous decision in February 2019 to extend the state statute of limitations for childhood sexual abuse, allowing survivors until their 55th birthday to step forward and file a civil lawsuit against negligent parties. At the same time, New York’s legislature has given the green-light to a “window of justice,” as California did in the early-2000s. This one-year period, beginning six months after the bill’s passage, allows sexual abuse survivors who were once barred by the statute of limitations a new opportunity to file lawsuits.
Legislatures in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware are currently considering similar changes to their own state laws. If these amendments are adopted, tens of thousands of sexual abuse survivors who were once barred from pursuing justice may gain the right to file civil lawsuits again.