Sexual assault is a serious crime that often goes unreported. Anyone who has experienced sexual violence should seek legal counsel immediately. This is because you cannot downplay the impact of sexual assault on the victims and their families.
So, yes, you can call a lawyer to help you get justice for the offense. Of course, it is your right to file a lawsuit and get compensation from the perpetrator and every other party involved in the crime. But if you are unsure about calling, here is a list of cases where a victim should pursue civil action.
- Statutory rape
- Sexual assault at school, daycare, and work
- Sexual assault by coaches or clergy
- Sexual assault on vacation or in a nursing home
- Human trafficking
All these instances mean you should report any sexual assault crime regardless of where it happened or who the attacker is. In addition, you should contact a personal injuries attorney as soon as possible to pursue justice and stop the perpetrator from future crimes.
How a personal injuries attorney helps a sexual assault victim
Developing a legal strategy
Once you file a lawsuit, your personal injuries attorney will help you develop a legal strategy and define the cause of action. The attorney helps protect your rights and secure damages to cover any losses you suffered from the incident. The attorney also draws a clear line between criminal and civil proceedings. Once they define your case, they will represent you in the respective court proceedings.
Your lawyer can allege liability for any of the following:
- Inadequate security
- Intentional infliction of emotional distress
- Premises liability
- Negligent infliction of emotional distress
Defining compensation avenues
Your personal injuries attorney informs you of all the compensation avenues for sex assault victims. Some are:
- Restitution: available through criminal courts, and the judge is given discretion over the terms.
- Worker’s compensation claim if the crime happened while you were acting within the scope and course of employment.
- A civil lawsuit against the perpetrator
- State crime victim compensation
- A civil lawsuit against third parties, i.e., entities or individuals whose duty was to protect the victim but breached the duty
After the court’s verdict, you may receive compensation for damages suffered. So, your lawyer helps you recoup financial losses.
Answering your questions
Your personal injuries attorney answers all your questions if you are a victim. If you are calling on behalf of a victim, you can still ask questions regarding the due legal process, and the lawyer will answer and clarify legal terms so that you stay informed on the proceedings.
Regardless of how prevalent sexual assault is, most victims still experience great pressure to remain silent or justify the attacker’s inappropriate behavior. As a result, they choose to cope with the trauma of the assault internally. Also, feelings of fear, confusion, and shame arise.
Since you have the right to file a lawsuit, calling a personal injuries attorney is a necessary step towards your healing. So, you must contact a lawyer as soon as possible for your mental, emotional, and physical well-being.