Sexual Abuse/Assault Litigation

WHAT IS SEXUAL ABUSE?

Sexual abuse/assault describes any type of sexual conduct inflicted on a child or adult by the use of threat, force, or when the victim is unable to understand the nature of the act or give knowing consent.

The Cheek Law Firm represents survivors of sexual abuse/assault in civil cases against the perpetrator and, often, the institution that is responsible for employing and/or supervising the perpetrator.

We work to empower survivors of sexual abuse/assault, to seek justice for them, and to create institutional change in organizations across the country to prevent future cases of sexual abuse/assault. The survivors of sexual abuse/assault are often hesitant to come forward due to feelings of shame, fear, and/or self-blame. Here at The Cheek Law Firm we understand these fears and concerns and offer compassionate legal counsel in a setting where the individual’s confidentiality is of the utmost importance throughout the entirety of the case.

The Cheek Law Firm handles a variety of sexual abuse/assault cases including but not limited to:

CLERGY ABUSE

Some religious organizations have failed to prevent the sexual abuse of innocent children and minors by pastors, priests, and clerics by failing to have in place and/or follow policies and procedures to prevent, detect, and report sexual abuse or hiring and retaining personnel that are inappropriate for work with children. The Cheek Law Firm represents victims of sexual abuse by priests, including victims sexually abused by priests or clergy members of the Archdiocese of New Orleans, and other jurisdictions.

PROGRAM ABUSE

Children can often fall victim to negligent caregivers or those who have the malicious intent of harming them. Child abuse by a caregiver can happen in any of the following places/setting:

  • Public schools
  • Private schools
  • Hospitals
  • After-school programs
  • Therapy/counseling
  • Sporting activities
  • Daycare
  • Camp Programs
  • Social clubs and organizations

SEXUAL HARASSMENT

Sexual harassment can occur anywhere and under any circumstance. It can create an intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment for employment, study, or social life. Sexual harassment can be any of the following:

  • Unwelcome sexual advances
  • Inappropriate comments, jokes, or innuendo
  • Indecent touching or gesturing
  • Requests for sexual favors
  • Unwanted talks about sex
  • Other verbal or physical coercion/bullying that is sexual in nature

Although sexual abuse/assault and harassment have been around for years, the #MeToo movement gained national traction in 2017 and brought light to the subject. Here at The Cheek Law Firm, we understand that these cases are extremely sensitive and should be handled by attorneys with experience.

IF YOU HAVE BEEN THE VICTIM OF SEXUAL ABUSE, EXPLOITATION OR ASSAULT

CONTACT THE CHEEK LAW FIRM TODAY

SEEKING DAMAGES AND COMPENSATION

Although sex abuse acts with minors are considered felonies and misdemeanors under Louisiana law, bringing a civil lawsuit seeking monetary damages and compensation is a different process and has a different burden of proof than that required in a criminal case.

The time to file a lawsuit in Louisiana is often limited. Subject to limited exceptions, a potential plaintiff has 1) ten years from the day the abused minor reaches the age of majority, or 2) one year after a minor informs a parent of the abuse, to initiate an action. If it can be shown that the recovery of a repressed memory prevented the plaintiff from asserting his or her rights within the prescribed time period, these time limitations may be extended.

Louisiana requires adults (21 years or older) who were abused as minors to show a reasonable basis that sexual abuse occurred during his or her childhood when bringing a lawsuit.

After being sexually abused or assaulted, the minor child may be physically injured, necessitating future medical treatment, recovery, and rehabilitation. The effects of the emotional harm and psychological trauma can last for years, often requiring extensive counseling, therapy, and medication into adulthood, and may have further economic consequences including an inability to work. Tragically, some victims take their own lives by committing suicide.

Beyond general and special compensatory damages for pain and suffering, emotional distress, medical care, and loss of income, Louisiana law also permits a plaintiff to seek punitive damages for criminal sexual activity occurring during the plaintiff’s childhood where there was “wanton and reckless regard” for the minor’s safety.

CONTACT OUR FIRM

IF YOU HAVE BEEN THE VICTIM OF SEXUAL ABUSE, EXPLOITATION OR ASSAULT, CONTACT THE CHEEK LAW FIRM TODAY FOR A FREE, CONFIDENTIAL CONSULTATION.