Sexual abuse is a crime, and it can be criminally prosecuted, but criminal prosecution does not compensate abuse victims for their injuries. Only a civil lawsuit can provide that compensation, and the Suffolk County personal injury attorneys at Sullivan Papain Block McGrath Coffinas & Cannavo, P.C. obtain just compensation for people who have been injured due to someone else’s wrongful conduct.
You do not need a conviction to file a civil claim against a sexual abuser. Even if prosecutors failed to obtain a conviction or did not pursue one, you may still have a civil claim. The burden of proof is higher in criminal courts than in civil courts, which means that it is easier to prove sexual abuse in a civil court.
Like all personal injury claims, however, claims arising from sexual abuse are subject to statutes of limitation, essentially deadlines for bringing suit. New York recently passed the Child Victims Act, however, which for a limited time allows sexual abuse victims to bring claims that arose so long ago that the statute of limitations period had already run out. So while even a decades-old claim may be viable again, the opportunity will run out, so victims should talk to an attorney as soon as possible.
Sometimes abuse survivors do not make civil claims against abusers because they think the abuser will not be able to pay a civil award. Even if the abuser is not able to pay the award, other parties who are in a position to pay a sexual abuse claim may be liable as well.
A common example is when employees take advantage of someone they have been hired to care for and protect. Employers are frequently held accountable for negligent hiring and negligent supervision when employees sexually abuse someone at work. Sexual abuse can occur in many care institutions, including the following:
Property owners and businesses as well may be liable for sexual abuse on their property if they failed to provide adequate security. Business and apartment owners have a duty to their clients and tenants. Owners may be responsible for sexual abuse on their property under dangerous conditions, such as dark parking lots or poorly-lit stairwells.
If you or a loved one has been the victim of sexual abuse, you need a legal advocate who will fight for your rights. Sexual abuse survivors deserve compensation for their medical bills, emotional recovery expenses, and the pain and suffering they endure.
Our experienced attorneys understand how difficult it can be for abuse victims to come forward. Our experience enables us to represent victims with sensitivity and help them understand their legal options.
Our attorneys do not charge fees for initial consultations and case evaluations. They take personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis. Instead of being charged by the hour for legal services, our attorneys will not collect attorneys’ fees until you have been compensated for your claim.
Contact the NYC personal injury attorneys at Sullivan Papain Block McGrath Coffinas & Cannavo, P.C. to schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys.