Sexual assault civil cases are increasing as victims become increasingly motivated to hold their attackers accountable. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other organizations examine the effect of sexual violence and how increasing social and legal pushback may deter criminals in the future. Victims often have a heavy emotional and financial burden to address after a sexual assault, which is why filing a lawsuit to recover compensation is a viable option. Any compensation that can be recovered will help with the costs of treatment.
When filing a civil lawsuit, the goal is usually to recover compensation for damages relating to the case. There are different types of damages available for victims of sexual assault that can provide assistance in getting treatment. If you are a victim of sexual assault, consult a child sexual assault lawyer for information about damages specific to your case.
Possible Recoverable Compensation
There are different types of damages available for victims of sexual assault. The amount and types of damages available depend on the specifics of each case. The possible recoverable compensation types include:
- Medical expenses: Victims often have large medical expenses. It is possible to recover some of those expenses from the perpetrator.
- Mental healthcare expenses: Mental healthcare expenses are also common for victims, especially the victims of child sexual abuse. They are usually included in the medical expenses but are commonly sought specifically because they are ongoing and expensive.
- Punitive damages: In cases where the judge believes that the perpetrator needs to be taught a lesson for specific bad acts or ongoing behavior, punitive damages may be awarded. The amount is at the judge’s discretion.
- Pain and Suffering: Pain and suffering damages are provided to address the emotional impact of the incident. The amount is determined by the judge and is usually reserved for cases with especially difficult to handle impacts on victims.
- Lost Wages: If you miss work because of the case, injuries, and treatment, you may be able to recover compensation to replace those lost wages.
There are other types of damages that are possible to recover and are not covered on this list. The amounts and types of compensation that you can recover depend on the specifics of your case. Consult with a child sexual assault lawyer to get a better idea of what types of compensation you may be able to expect in your case.
Financial Impacts of Child Sexual Assault
Victims of child sexual assault tend to face serious financial issues later in life. It begins with medical expenses that their parents cover as a result of the assault. This tends to put families in financial debt or create financial struggles for some time. As the child ages, mental health issues begin to arise that make it difficult to find or maintain employment. They also seek employment options that are not particularly high-paying, limiting the amount that they can earn.
Combined with difficulties making a living and ongoing care needs, most victims struggle financially for much of their lives. With proper treatment, many victims recover to an extent. However, this is difficult given the way that the assault changes victims’ lives.
Long-Term Impacts of Child Sexual Assault
Aside from the financial issues created by child sexual assaults, there are other long-term impacts. One of the leading problems is the systemic problem that these sexual assaults create. Many used to believe that child sexual assaults were only targeted at young girls by older male strangers. However, research published by the National Institutes of Health and other organizations revealed that young boys are also being targeted in large numbers.
The long-term impacts often leave victims with mental, social, and emotional problems as they grow. In some cases, this can also lead to the victims becoming abusers later in life. There is a cycle to the abuse and it takes a significant intervention to stop.
Statute of Limitations
A statute of limitations is a time limit for filing legal actions. In most states, the statute of limitations for child sexual assault is longer than other types of crimes. The statute usually begins the day that the victim reaches the age of maturity, which is usually 16 to 18 years old depending on where they live. For most states, the statute provides six years for the victim to file the lawsuit. However, there are many states that have raised or removed the statute of limitations to make it easier for victims to report their assaults.
Contact a Lawyer to Discuss Your Case
If you or a loved one is the victim of child sexual abuse, it may be time to consult a lawyer to explore your legal options. It may be possible to recover compensation from your abuser. Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 794-0444 to discuss your case with our legal team. The call is free and we do not collect a fee unless we secure a fair settlement or court award on your behalf.