Clergy people have a particular position in society. They can garner authority, respect, and reverence, and this can make people trust them unconditionally. Sometimes an abuser can recognize this position of power and take advantage of it. Children are vulnerable, and when a person they view as an authority figure approaches them to do something, they may not know how to say no. It is a gut-wrenching fact that children are sexually abused every day. If a member of the clergy abused you, you could seek compensation.
Pintas & Mullins Law Firm has a Stockton clergy abuse lawyer for your case. We know the laws of California, and our team wants to help. Call us today for a free consultation at (800) 219-9622. We do not charge any upfront fees, and we get paid only if we win. California has made it easier for child victims of sexual assault to file for compensation. We can guide you through the process.
You Have a Right to Seek Compensation
What happened to you was a crime. A child cannot give consent to any sexual activity. The people who did this or allowed it to happen are responsible for the consequences you have had to suffer. There are costs associated with the effects of child sexual abuse. The victim may need psychological treatment, medications, or even hospitalization to overcome their trauma.
The California Code of Civil Procedure § 340.1 now includes important amendments made in October 2019. Victims are now allowed to file a lawsuit for abuse that happened when they were minors until they turn age 40. The amendment also allowed for a three-year window where victims can file lawsuits no matter their age or whether the court previously denied their case because of the statute of limitations.
It can take many years before a victim feels comfortable enough to tell anyone what happened. Coming to terms with what happened is painful and difficult. Now victims have more time to make important decisions regarding a lawsuit.
We know it can feel overwhelming to begin a legal process. It can be even more daunting if you are still in treatment for the abuse you suffered. That is why a Stockton clergy abuse lawyer could be a good person to have on your team. An attorney from Pintas & Mullins Law Firm can handle the difficult legal work on your behalf, helping you seek justice.
Abuse Can Take Many Forms
Children cannot give consent to any sexual activity, plain and simple. Any sexual activity that involves a minor is a crime. This does not necessarily mean force or physical touch. Sexual abuse of a child can come in many forms, including:
- Suggestive or inappropriate talk
- Fondling or touching
- Showing the child sexually explicit material
- Exposing oneself to the child
- Forcing the child to watch sexual acts
These all constitute sexual abuse. If a clergy member forced you into any of these acts or any other sexual abuse, you could seek compensation. If you believe the church or diocese they worked for was trying to cover up or dismiss your abuse, you could also name them in your lawsuit.
There are thousands of accused clergy members in California, including several from the Diocese of Stockton. The kind of abuse you suffered is sadly not uncommon. The Catholic Church has already paid out billions in settlements, and more victims come forward and file lawsuits all the time.
If you are ready to pursue compensation for your suffering, call us today to schedule a free case evaluation with our team. We want to help you and your family find some closure.
What You Can Recover
You can seek nearly any cost that was the result of your abuse. Sometimes, sexual abuse may require immediate medical attention. Later in life, though, victims may still need to seek treatment for the psychological effects they have suffered, such as anxiety and depression. This can mean visits with a therapist or possibly an in-patient treatment facility.
Medications could also be part of the treatment plan. Of course, the psychological consequences of all sexual abuse victims are serious, and they are eligible for compensation. A lawyer from Pintas & Mullins Law Firm can discuss the details of your case with you and tell you what fair compensation would be.
For a free legal consultation with a Clergy Abuse Lawyer serving Stockton, call (800) 794-0444
The Effects of Abuse
Victims of sexual abuse suffer from the effects of it long after the abuse itself stops. Some of the consequences victims deal with include depression, anxiety, sexual problems, relationship problems, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and other psychological problems. They could also suffer physical trauma.
According to the Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinics of North America, child victims of sexual abuse are much more likely to have problems once they become adults. In addition to the problems listed above, they can self-medicate with drugs and alcohol to cope with their mental and emotional struggles.
It can sometimes take professional help to make the connection between abuse and any psychological or behavioral issues a person may face. This is another reason the extension of the statute of limitations in California is important. A person might not even realize that the behaviors they engage in are coping mechanisms after their abuse.
There are social implications to abuse as well. The victim may feel no one will believe them or share some of the blame themselves. When it comes to clergy, the abuser can hold some authority. People respect and believe in religious figures. That can make a victim feel like no one will ever believe their story. All these factors make the abuse difficult and painful to report.
Stockton Clergy Abuse Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm Today
You have a right to pursue compensation from your abuser and the organizations that protected them. You have suffered enough. You and your family could seek awards to cover your costs for medical bills, emotional distress, and other damages.
Call (800) 219-9622 now to talk with our team about how a Stockton clergy abuse lawyer can help you during a free consultation. You will pay us only if we win a settlement for you. We want to fight for you and your family.