If you are a survivor of sexual assault, you have been through an incredibly traumatic experience. While the criminal justice system may attempt to hold your perpetrator criminally responsible for the assault, criminal cases provide little to no compensation to survivors. However, you deserve compensation for what you’ve endured. At the Hartley Law Firm, our Lewisville sexual abuse lawyers aggressively pursue justice on behalf of survivors. We realize that no amount of money will ever undo the harm you’ve suffered; however, a significant damages award can help you overcome the financial hurdles you face and may make it easier to move on with your life.
Common Forms of Sexual Abuse
Sexual abuse can occur anywhere, often, where you least expect it. In most cases, perpetrators target people they know. In fact, according to one source, less than 20% of sexual assaults are committed by perpetrators who do not know their victims. Some of the most common types of sexual assault involve the following:
- Assaults by family members,
- Assaults committed by acquaintances,
- Assaults committed by medical professionals,
- Child sexual abuse,
- Date rape,
- Nursing home sexual abuse, and
- Workplace sexual violence.
The Lewisville sexual abuse attorneys at the Hartley Law Firm are here to help survivors of sexual violence obtain justice by filing a sexual assault lawsuit against their attackers.
Survivors of Sexual Abuse Often Suffer Severe Physical and Emotional Injuries
A sexual assault is a physical attack. However, it is also much more than that. Victims of sex abuse often endure not only severe physical injuries but also long-term emotional trauma. A sexual assault victim may experience any of the following in the wake of an attack:
- Anxiety and depression,
- Employment difficulties,
- Flashbacks and PTSD,
- Loss of trust in authority figures,
- Panic attacks,
- Poor academic performance,
- Sexual dysfunction,
- Substance abuse issues,
- Suicidal thoughts, and
- Trust and intimacy issues.
Of course, every attack and every survivor are different, and it may be difficult to assess the long-term effects of sexual assault in the immediate aftermath. Thus, it is important for those who survived an act of sexual violence to not only consult with a medical professional but also a Lewisville sexual abuse lawyer. This way, survivors can have a firm grasp on their legal rights, should they choose to pursue them.
Can Survivors Hold Perpetrators of Sexual Abuse Accountable?
After you report sexual abuse to the police, it triggers an investigation. If police determine that there is sufficient evidence to bring criminal charges against the perpetrator, they refer the case to the local prosecutor’s office. This begins the criminal trial process.
The focus of a criminal trial is to punish the perpetrator for breaking the law. While a judge may order a defendant to pay restitution to a survivor, there is no guarantee that the defendant can make good on their obligations. Additionally, given the high burden of proof in criminal cases, a conviction is far from certain.
However, sexual assault survivors can file a civil case against their perpetrator, as well. In a civil sexual abuse lawsuit, the burden of proof is lower, meaning it is easier to prove that the perpetrator was liable. Additionally, the sole purpose of a civil claim is to compensate a survivor for what they’ve been through.
Thus, if you are successful in bringing a claim, you may recover significant compensation. Depending on the specifics of your case, this may include amounts for any or all of the following:
- Past and future medical expenses,
- Lost wages due to an inability to work,
- Pain and suffering,
- Mental anguish, and
- Emotional distress.
At the Hartley Law Firm, our Lewisville sexual abuse attorney has extensive experience representing survivors and helping them obtain justice. We conduct a thorough review of every case we handle to ensure we identify the full extent of your economic and non-economic damages.
Contact the Lewisville Sexual Abuse Attorneys at the Hartley Law Firm for Immediate Assistance
Have you suffered through a sexual assault? Are you looking for where to turn for help? The Hartley Law Firm is here to provide you with the information and support you need to make the best decision for yourself and your family. Austin Hartley is a life-long Texan who takes pride in advocating on behalf of the victims of sexual assault. He values forming meaningful relationships with his clients and always makes himself available to answer your questions, whenever they arise.
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