HOW CAN I SUE FOR SEXUAL ASSAULT (ABUSE)?
Sexual assault victims can file a civil claim in addition to any criminal charges brought against their attackers. Even if a defendant is found innocent in a criminal case, or even if no charges are filed at all, we can still file a civil claim against the perpetrator.
The outcome of a civil case does not impact the criminal case and vice versa. With a civil claim, you may be able to pursue damages for:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages from missed work
- Psychological distress
- Damage to your relationships
- Punitive damages
To collect damages, we must prove that it is more likely than not that the defendant caused you physical, psychological, or emotional damage.
Multiple Parties May Be Liable
In addition to the perpetrator who committed the assault, other parties may be held accountable as well. A company, business, school, organization, or charity may be liable for damages if its negligence contributed to the assault. For example, inadequate security at an apartment building or an employer's failure to supervise an employee may have indirectly allowed the assault to happen to you.
Statute Of Limitations
In DC, the deadline, known as a statute of limitations, within which a personal injury must be filed is generally 3 years. However, the "Sexual Abuse Statute of Limitations Amendment Act of 2018" gives victims more time depending on the unique circumstances of the case. A victim may lose their right to seek damages once this set time period expires. Therefore, it is important to file your claim as soon as possible to help you understand the statute of limitations for your case given your situation.
We are committed to helping victims of sexual assault and sexual harassment.