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Sex Assault

Compensation for Sexual Assault Victims

Sexual assault is a violent and traumatic crime that can have devastating effects on its victims. The physical, emotional, and psychological scars can last a lifetime, making it difficult for victims to move on and heal. It's important to understand that as a victim of sexual assault, you have the right to take legal action against the perpetrator.

At Eric Blank Injury Attorneys, we understand the sensitivity of sexual assault cases, and we are committed to providing our clients with the compassionate and effective legal representation they deserve. Our experienced attorneys specialize in handling sexual assault cases and will work tirelessly to ensure that you get the justice and compensation you deserve.

Sexual Assault in the United States

Any unwelcome sexual contact or behavior that occurs without the victim's permission is considered sexual assault. It is a criminal offense and is punishable by law.

Unfortunately, sexual assault is a pervasive problem in the United States. According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC), one in every three women and one in every six men will be victims of sexual assault at some point in their lives. Furthermore, one American is sexually assaulted every 73 seconds. These figures are alarming, and they highlight the need for legal action to be taken against perpetrators of sexual assault.

Sexual assault can occur anywhere, although it is more common in particular areas. The majority of sexual assaults, according to the NSVRC, occur in or near the victim's home. Other common locations for sexual assault include public venues such as parks, parking lots, and bathrooms, as well as businesses, schools, and college campuses.

Despite the prevalence of sexual assault in the US, many victims do not report the crime or pursue legal action against their perpetrator. Fear of retaliation, shame, and lack of support are common reasons why victims remain silent.

Types of Sexual Assault

There are several different types of sexual assault, including:

  • Rape: This is the most severe form of sexual assault, and it involves the penetration of the victim's body by the perpetrator's genitalia.
  • Sexual battery: This involves any unwanted touching of the victim's intimate body parts, such as the breasts or genitals.
  • Sexual coercion: This involves using threats or other forms of pressure to force the victim into sexual activity.
  • Attempted rape: This occurs when the perpetrator attempts to rape the victim but is unsuccessful.
  • Child sexual abuse: This involves any sexual activity between an adult and a child.

How Sexual Assault Impacts Survivors

Sexual assault may have a devastating physical and mental impact on its victims, including:

  • Emotional and psychological impact: Sexual assault can cause victims to experience feelings of shame, guilt, and self-blame. They may also struggle with trust issues and have difficulty forming intimate relationships.
  • Physical impact: Victims of sexual assault may suffer physical injuries such as bruises, cuts, and injuries to the genital area. They may also contract sexually transmitted infections (STIs) or become pregnant as a result of the assault.
  • Financial impact: Sexual assault can have financial consequences for victims, including medical bills, lost wages, and other expenses related to the assault.
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD): Many sexual assault survivors develop PTSD, which can cause flashbacks, nightmares, and other symptoms that significantly affect their quality of life.
  • Substance abuse: Victims of sexual assault may turn to drugs or alcohol to cope with the trauma they have experienced.
  • Self-harm: Some victims of sexual assault may engage in self-harm behaviors to cope with their emotions or to feel a sense of control over their body.
  • Eating disorders: Victims of sexual assault may develop eating disorders to cope with their trauma or to regain control over their body.
  • Sexual dysfunction: Sexual assault can cause victims to experience sexual dysfunction, including pain during sex, difficulty becoming aroused, or loss of libido.
  • Social isolation: Victims of sexual assault may withdraw from social activities, friends, and family to avoid triggers or reminders of their trauma.

What to Do If You Have Been Sexually Abused?

When a sexual assault occurs, it is critical to take the following steps:

  • Seek safety: Go to a safe location as quickly as possible and remove yourself from the perpetrator's proximity.
  • Get medical attention: Even if you don't have any physical injuries, it's crucial to see a doctor as soon as possible. They can document any injuries and address any potential STDs or pregnancies.
  • Report the attack: Report the assault to police enforcement as soon as possible. They can gather evidence and begin an inquiry.
  • Obtain emotional assistance: Seek emotional support from friends, family, or a therapist. You do not have to go through this by yourself.
  • Consider taking legal action: If you're thinking about taking legal action, speak with a qualified attorney who specializes in sexual assault cases. They can offer advice and assistance throughout the process.

High-Profile Sexual Assault Cases in the United States

  • Harvey Weinstein sexual assault and harassment allegations: Weinstein, a former Hollywood producer, was accused of sexual assault and harassment on many occasions. After being found guilty of sexual assault and rape, he was sentenced to 23 years in jail in 2020.
  • Larry Nassar sexual abuse case: Nassar, a former doctor for the USA Gymnastics team, was accused of sexually assaulting hundreds of young women and children. After being found guilty on numerous counts of sexual assault in 2018, he was given a sentence of 40 to 175 years in prison.
  • Bill Cosby sexual assault case: Many women accused comedian and actor William Cosby of sexual assault. He was sentenced to 3 to 10 years in jail in 2018 after being convicted of drugging and sexually abusing a woman in 2004.
  • Uber sexual assault settlements: Uber faced many lawsuits alleging sexual assault by its drivers. In 2018, Uber agreed to pay $10 million to resolve a class-action lawsuit filed by female customers who claimed Uber drivers sexually abused them.
  • Baylor University sexual assault scandal: Baylor University was the subject of many lawsuits alleging that the institution mistreated student sexual assault reports. In 2018, the university agreed to pay $80 million to settle a lawsuit brought by a group of women who claimed Baylor football players sexually abused them.

Filing a Lawsuit for Sexual Assault

Filing a sexual assault lawsuit is crucial for victims to obtain justice and compensation. By holding the perpetrator accountable, victims can prevent them from causing further harm and recover financial compensation for losses, including medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Some victims may also be entitled to punitive damages.

If you have been sexually attacked, get medical assistance immediately and keep any evidence that may help your case. Inform legal enforcement about the attack and provide comprehensive details about it, including when and where it occurred.

To build a solid case, work with an experienced sexual assault attorney who can guide you through the process and assist you in gathering evidence, such as witness testimonies and medical records. Your attorney can help you achieve the justice and compensation you deserve for the injury you have endured by representing you in court or during settlement discussions.

Sexual Assault Cases: Criminal vs. Civil

There are significant differences between criminal and civil sexual assault lawsuits. A criminal case involves the state or federal government prosecuting the perpetrator for a crime, while a civil case is brought by the victim seeking compensation for the harm they suffered. In a criminal case, the prosecutor must prove the defendant's guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, and if the defendant is found guilty, they may face imprisonment or fines. In a civil case, the victim must prove their case by a preponderance of the evidence, and if successful, may be awarded damages for their losses, such as medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

Another significant distinction is the burden of proof in each type of lawsuit. The prosecution must show the defendant's guilt beyond a reasonable doubt in a criminal proceeding, which is a high standard of proof. In a civil proceeding, the victim must show their case by a preponderance of the evidence, which means that it is more likely than not that the defendant committed the assault.

Furthermore, the purpose of each type of case is different. In a criminal case, the focus is on punishing the perpetrator for their crime and upholding the law. In a civil case, the focus is on compensating the victim for the harm they suffered and holding the perpetrator accountable for their actions.

A victim can pursue both criminal and civil cases for the same assault. However, it's important to understand that the two cases are separate and have different standards of proof, burdens of proof, and objectives.

The sexual assault statute of limitations varies based on the state and jurisdiction where the assault happened. Some states have no statute of limitations for criminal sexual assault cases, while others impose a time restriction for filing charges. Similarly, the statute of limitations for civil lawsuits related to sexual assault also varies by state and can range from one to several years.

Choose Eric Blank Injury Attorneys

When it comes to choosing a lawyer to handle your sexual assault case, you want someone who not only has the necessary legal expertise but also understands the emotional toll that such an experience can take on you. At Eric Blank Injury Attorneys, we recognize that every case is unique and requires a personalized approach that considers the individual circumstances of each client.

We pride ourselves on our track record of success in sexual assault cases. At Eric Blank Injury Attorneys, we understand the sensitive nature of these cases, and we are committed to providing our clients with the highest level of care and support throughout the legal process. We know how important it is to gather all relevant evidence and build a strong case to ensure that justice is served.

For a free consultation, call Eric Blank Injury Attorneys today at (702) 825-6803 (702) 825-6803  or visit www.ericblanklaw.com.

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