A sexual assault is something that nobody should ever have to experience. If you or a loved one have been sexually assaulted, then you may be wondering if you have any options. Soloff & Zervanos, P.C. wants to be by your advocate as you seek to hold the perpetrators responsible.
When you need a Brooklyn sexual assault attorney, we will work tirelessly on your behalf. While we know that no amount of money will erase the pain and suffering you have experienced, it can help bring justice and closure. It can also help prevent this from happening to anyone else.
What Are The Numbers
We all hear about sexual assault and rape, but many people could never comprehend what victims go through in the aftermath. Unfortunately, sexual assault is common in the United States and there are many misconceptions about how they happen and who perpetrated them.
First, we want to put the stats from the National Sexual Violence Resource Center into perspective:
- 1 in 5 women and 1 in 71 men will be raped at some point during their lives.
- 1 in 3 women and 1 in 6 men experience some form of contact sexual violence.
- 91% of victims of rape and sexual assault are female, and 9% are male.
- Every 68 seconds, an American experiences sexual assault.
- Every 9 minutes, an American child is sexually assaulted.
- Substantiated sex abuse cases in America number around 60,000 per year.
- 17.7 million American women have experienced rape from 1998 through the present.
- 2.79 million American men have been raped from 1998 through the present.
- More than 433,000 sexual assaults or rapes occur each year among people ages 12 and older.
This is not something that happens to “other” people. Someone you know has likely been sexually assaulted. This type of assault takes many forms and can include:
- Any unwanted or forced sexual act performed on someone or in which someone was forced to perform.
- Any unwanted sexual touching, including on the outside or underneath clothing.
- A victim being exposed to or being forced to watch sex acts or pornography.
- Someone exposing themselves to a victim.
- Non-physical things like sexual harassment, including making inappropriate sexual comments.
Sexual assault is almost never perpetrated by a stranger to the victim. In fact, the NSVRC says that 91% of victims of rape knew their perpetrator.
Sexual assault charges may include the following:
- 1st, 2nd, or 3rd degree sexual abuse
- Aggravated sexual abuse
- Facilitating a sex offense by giving the victim a controlled substance
- Female genital mutilation
- Forcible touching
- Persistent sexual abuse
- Sexually motivated felonies
The Long-Term Costs
Victims of sexual assault and rape are going to suffer long-term emotional and psychological effects in their lives. 81% of women and 35% of men who have been victims of sexual assault report suffering from disorders such as PTSD. Most victims need counseling to work through what has happened to them.
In years past, victims of sexual assault and abuse had a short time frame to bring accusations against their attackers. Realizing that the emotional and physical trauma that comes along with sexual assault can result in victims being reluctant to come forward with their stories of abuse and victimization, the state of New York enacted the Child Victim’s Act in 2019.
Under the Child Victim’s Act, victims of sexual assault and sexual abuse are afforded more protections than previously given to them. It extends the amount of time that victims of sexually related crimes are permitted to report the offending perpetrators in their assault cases, including victims of sexual assault, sexual abuse, rape, and molestation. The statute of limitation for reporting these crimes was extended by five years. In addition, the law:
- Gives survivors of child sex crimes until age 25 to report a misdemeanor sex offense against them and until age 28 to report a felony sex crime.
- Allows survivors of child sex abuse until age 55 to file a civil claim against the perpetrator of the crime.
- Allows claims against private and public institutions without the need to give notice of claim. This includes school districts, state municipalities, and local governments.
- Trains judges to better handle child sex abuse/assault/molestation cases.
Thanks to this much-needed legislation, victims of abuse have a longer time to at least get the closure that can come from holding their abusers financially accountable, even if the criminal courts have failed them or too long has passed since the abuse or assault occurred.
It is not just the abusers or perpetrators that can be held accountable in a civil case regarding sexual assault allegations. If the person committing the sex crime is an employee, volunteer, or has some other close affiliation with a church, school, government agency, or some other institution, that institution can be held liable as well. This is truer still if the institution had a hand in covering up or protecting the abuser or perpetrator, as often played out in the past in crimes committed by the clergy against young victims across the globe.
What Happens Next?
If you or a loved one have been sexually assaulted, you may wonder if you have any options. Soloff & Zervanos, P.C. want you to know that there are steps you can take right now. Even if there is a criminal case related to the assault, you have the right to pursue civil action against the perpetrator.
We will work diligently on your behalf in order to secure the compensation you deserve for your past, present, and future expenses. This can include:
- Pain and suffering damages
- Lost wages and benefits if necessary
- Compensation for needed counseling
- Punitive damages against those responsible
While we know that no amount of money will erase the pain you are feeling, it can help bring closure and justice. When you need a Brooklyn sexual assault attorney, you can contact us by clicking here or calling us at 215-929-7216.