Emotional scars from child sex abuse and molestation can last a lifetime. While perpetrators of child sex abuse can be punished through the criminal courts, victims can also file civil lawsuits for sexual assault and abuse of a child. In addition to suing the perpetrator, victims can hold schools and companies responsible for their negligent hiring and supervision of child molesters.
Child sex abuse victims can file claims for sexual harassment under Civil Code §51.9 if the abuser was the child’s teacher, coach, doctor, psychologist, or was otherwise in a professional relationship with the child. California laws allow for recovery of the victim’s attorneys’ fees for claims of sexual harassment pursuant to Civil Code §51.9 and also for civil claims brought against perpetrators that have been convicted of a felony pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure §1021.4.
In addition, California Code of Civil Procedure section 340.1 prohibits childhood sexual assault, and provides for liability again both the person who committed the childhood sexual assault and against the organization responsible for letting the childhood sexual assault happen. In fact, CCP section 340.1 was amended effective 2020 to allow for treble damages against an organization that participated in a cover-up regarding evidence of childhood sexual assault that led to further child sex abuse.
In addition, changes to CCP section 340.1 that became effective in 2020 open up the statute of limitations for childhood sexual abuse cases for a period of three years. This means that from January 1, 2020 through December 31, 2022, anyone that has been a victim of child sex abuse can file a lawsuit for their damages, regardless of how long ago the child sex abuse occurred. Beginning in 2023, child sex abuse victims will generally have until they turn 40 to file a lawsuit for the damages that they suffered as a result of the child sex abuse. There are exceptions that can extend this amount of time, but speaking to an experienced child sex abuse lawyer is the best step in determining whether or not a victim should move forward with a child sex abuse lawsuit.
If someone in your family has been sexually abused or molested, you should call a child sex abuse lawyer right away to confidentially discuss the case. The Broderick Law Firm has experienced and hard-fighting child sex abuse lawyer in Palo Alto, California. Broderick Law’s child sex abuse lawyer is happy to discuss claims with victims and their parents, and can set up a private in-person meeting to discuss child sex abuse cases at their offices in Palo Alto. Mr. Broderick is also available by phone at (650) 857-9000. Call today. No obligation.