What kind of organizations are common in institutional sexual abuse cases?
Institutional abuses, including sexual assaults, can occur in any organization with a closed-in hierarchy. This could mean places like schools and colleges, churches, the armed forces, prisons, rehab or mental health facilities, and workplaces both small and large.
Wherever there is a power differential between those who give and those who bust obey orders, there is potential for abuse and exploitation.
What are the long-term effects of institutional sexual assault?
The long-term effects of institutional sexual abuse could range from physical to psychological. Physical effects could include unplanned pregnancies or sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Psychological harm could mean conditions like panic attacks, depression, and PTSD.
Certain mental health conditions could cause or contribute to substance abuse or other forms of self-harm like eating disorders. Institutional abuse also violates an important trust an individual once had in the communities attached to their church, their school, or their job. Without that support system to rely on, survivors may feel abandoned indefinitely.
Can I sue on behalf of my child for institutional sexual abuse?
You may have the right to file a lawsuit on behalf of your child for institutional abuse. This includes legal actions against schools, churches, and organizations for kids. For example, groups the Boy/Girl Scouts of America or church-affiliated programs like Young Life.
Individuals also have rights as adult survivors of child sexual abuse. Many states including California have opened up the lawsuit filing deadline for survivors of childhood sexual assault to seek justice.
How long do I have to file an institutional sexual assault or abuse case?
The deadline for filing a civil lawsuit for sexual assault or abuse involving an institution depends on many factors: your age, when the assault occurred, and what kind of institution (public, governmental, or commercial).
The important information to know is that deadlines do exist, and if you miss any one of them, it may affect your chances of justice and the degree of impact you can have on seeing real change.
Contact an attorney from Levin Simes Abrams right away at (415) 426-3000 to get direct answers about your specific situation. The more you know and the sooner you act, the more choices you may have to decide what options you want to pursue.