Sexual abuse, whether at the hands of a coach, teacher, or clergyman, can cause tremendous physical and emotional trauma and wounds that may never completely heal. If you or your child has suffered abuse, you may feel a range of complicated and overwhelming emotions, including sadness, anger, and even hopelessness. You do not have to go through this alone. A clergy abuse lawyer can help you seek justice and retribution for the trauma you have suffered.
Sexual abuse perpetrated by religious leaders, including Catholic clergy, is sadly nothing new. Pastors and priests have long abused that power to exploit others. However, in recent years, changes in perception and policy have prompted an increasing number of survivors, their families, community activists, and legal advocates to speak up.
Abusers must pay for their actions. Otherwise, the pattern of abuse will continue. An Islip clergy abuse lawyer at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm advocates for victims and their families and brings perpetrators to justice. If a New York clergy member abused you or a loved one, consider calling the office at (800) 219-9622 to speak with a staff member to schedule a free consultation with an attorney.
Examples of Sexual Abuse
Sexual abuse constitutes a range of inappropriate and assaultive behaviors. Sexual abusers touch others sexually in an abusive way without their consent.
Such unwanted or non-consensual contact can include:
- Non-consensual fondling or touching of a sexual nature
- Sexual stimulation of any nature
- Engaging in sexual contact with a minor or a person incapable of giving consent
- Removal of clothing with the use of threat or force
- Sexual intimidation, comments, or threats
- Revealing oneself to a minor or person incapable of consent
- Repeated and unwanted sexual remarks, gestures, or behaviors
- Exposing a minor to explicitly images or sexually charged language
- Taking or requesting inappropriate photographs of a minor
This list is not exhaustive. If you or your child suffered abuse, do not hesitate to get in touch with the office of an Islip clergy abuse lawyer. Abusers must answer for their crimes. Not only is it crucial that you and your family get the justice you deserve, but pursuing criminal or civil charges against abusers can help put an end to these tragedies and protect potential future victims. If you are ready to take action, call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm to get started.
For a free legal consultation with a Clergy Abuse Lawyer serving Islip, call (800) 219-9622
Prevalence of Clergy Abuse in the U.S.
Sexual abuse in the Catholic Church has been an issue for centuries. Sadly, it was mostly hidden by a shroud of shame and silencing of victims until recently. Within the past few decades, the way the Church and general society perceive and address sexual assault has, fortunately, drastically changed.
Survivors of sexual abuse are coming forward in record numbers and receiving settlements for what clergymen did to them. These settlements help pay for things like therapy, trauma, missed work, and other losses from the sexual abuse the clergymen subjected them to.
Tragically, many survivors suffer in silence. Fear and shame, often a result of threats or manipulation by abusers, can prevent survivors from asking for help. Along with these complex emotions, survivors may be reluctant to speak out against their abusers because they are intimidated or fearful that the courts will not take them seriously.
Many of the recent allegations have come to light from survivors who have found strength and validation witnessing fellow survivors share their stories and achieve retribution.
Numerous individuals and groups have often pursued justice through the legal system and discussed their trauma on personal or public platforms. In the 2018-19 audit year, the Los Angeles Times reports dioceses and other Catholic entities paid $281.6 million to victims, including payment for incidents reported in years prior.
While no amount of money can heal a person’s trauma or restore what their abuser took from them so maliciously, pursuing lawsuits against abusers can be beneficial. For one, monetary awards may provide survivors with the financial resources they need to pay for long-term counseling and treatment for mental health ailments, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, and depression.
Survivors can also utilize these funds to establish a better future for themselves so they can pick up the pieces and achieve retribution through healing and happiness despite the violence they have suffered.
New York’s Child Victims Act
Another significant victory for sexual assault survivors is the passing of the New York Child Victims Act, Senate Bill S2440. According to this legislation, the statute of limitations for civil cases extends until the victim turns 55 years old. Survivors have until they turn 28 to pursue criminal charges against their abusers. This means children and teens who have suffered abuse do not have to report it until they are adults conscious of understanding the harm done to them and their options for seeking justice.
Furthermore, the Bill, passed in 2019, provides a window that allows victims to report abuse and press charges, even if the offense occurred decades ago, until Aug. 14, 2021. Victims of the Catholic Church or other public or private institutions can bring charges within this timeframe.
So, even if survivors wanted to come forward to seek retribution after their statute of limitations expired, they can now do so, thanks to this legislation.
Islip Clergy Abuse Lawyer Near Me (800) 219-9622
Hire an Islip Clergy Abuse Lawyer
Abusers must answer for their crimes. In the case of sexual abuse, even if the abuser is deceased, you may be able to seek justice by bringing a suit against the Church and complicit parties. The team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm is prepared to fight for you. Call the office at (800) 219-9622 to speak with a staff member to discuss how the legal team can help you in your search for healing and retribution.