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California School Sexual Abuse Lawyers

When you send your children to school, you want them to feel safe. Unfortunately, one of the threats they face is sexual abuse in schools. This type of abuse happens more often than parents and the public realize. Sexual abuse occurs at both public and private primary and secondary schools and college universities. If you or someone you love is the victim of sexual abuse in their school, contact the California school sexual abuse lawyers at Silva Injury Law.

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What Is Sexual Harassment in Schools?

Sexual harassment can involve other children and adults in positions of power. Students harassers might be from the same school or different ones. 

Students may consider some forms of harassment to be no big deal. They wrongfully assume it’s fun and that the recipient will see it as a joke. Other sexual harassment may be more sinister, such as a teacher making advances toward a student.

Many students are subjected to unwanted advances and comments daily in California schools. Sexual harassment can include:

  • Unwanted sexual comments and sexual jokes;
  • Showing or sending graphic photos or photos;
  • Unwanted sexual touching or advances;
  • Suggestive gestures;
  • Pulling on someone’s undergarments like a bra strap or underwear; and
  • Setting someone up as the subject of sexual rumors.

If you suspect your minor child is the victim of sexual harassment, try speaking with them to get the whole story. Then, contact a qualified lawyer who has experience handling California school sexual abuse cases.

What Is Sexual Bullying in Schools?

Someone who sexually bullies others uses physical and non-physical actions. They refer to someone’s gender or sexuality in a degrading manner. The aggressor tries to pressure or damage the victim in some way. Examples of sexual bullying include trying to force someone to act in a particular sexual way or talking about their sexuality in a demeaning manner. Students who identify as LGBTQIA are especially prone to becoming victims of sexual bullying. 

Who Is Liable for California School Sexual Abuse?

When sexual abuse, whether it’s harassment or bullying, happens at school, those in power have a legal duty to try and stop the abuse. Some teachers and administrators try to brush it off as “kids being kids,” but sexual abuse in schools is a growing problem. All students have a right to feel safe at school and free from sexual harassment and sexual bullying.

Identifying all liable parties depends on the circumstances surrounding the sexual abuse. The individual perpetrator should be held accountable for their actions. Abusers aren’t always other children. Adults in positions of power and authority might be the ones responsible. Perpetrators within the school system often include:

  • Teachers,
  • Coaches,
  • Counselors,
  • Administrators,
  • Volunteers, and
  • Other school staff.

Unfortunately, many schools try to cover up any allegations of abuse that involve employees. It might be necessary to file a lawsuit before the school and district take the allegations seriously.

Reasons to Hire a Lawyer for School Sexual Abuse Claims

Filing a California school sexual abuse claim is complex. In some situations, there are grounds to argue that sexual abuse in school could be a civil rights violation. Title IX prohibits discrimination based on sex for educational activities and programs that receive financial aid from the federal government. 

That’s why you need an attorney to protect your family’s rights. Many people don’t realize how much work is involved in litigating a sexual abuse case, especially one involving a school. There are numerous benefits to hiring a lawyer. Some key benefits include the following:

  • The ability for your family to focus on healing without having to relive the trauma every day when speaking with the insurance company or defense attorney;
  • Having someone looking out for your family;
  • Knowing there’s a trustworthy person to direct your questions to and express concerns;
  • Helping reduce your stress;
  • Ensuring all legal deadlines are met; and
  • Not needing to try to negotiate your own settlement.

It’s essential to remain focused on your family and help the victim through this horrific ordeal. No child should suffer sexual harassment or sexual bullying at school. If your child is a victim, seek legal assistance immediately.

Why Choose Silva Injury Law as Your California School Sexual Abuse Attorneys?

Protecting the rights of school sexual abuse survivors is important to us. Schools fight allegations because they have significant resources to fall back on, including fully paid defense attorneys to protect the school and its staff members. But who protects the survivor? We strongly believe in fighting for victims’ rights at Silva Injury Law. When you hire us to represent your family, we will:

  • Conduct a thorough, independent investigation;
  • Use resources available to help establish who is liable;
  • Try to find any evidence that the school might be hiding or covering up;
  • Work with industry experts to establish the victim’s total damages;
  • File a lawsuit on behalf of the victim; and
  • Handle the case to the best of our ability, assuming it will go to trial.

We will oversee every aspect of your case. You want an attorney who represents you to put their full effort into the case and build the strongest case against the defendants. When you hire Silva Injury Law as your California school sexual abuse lawyers, rest assured we have the skills and resources to go up against the education system in California.

Statute of Limitations for Survivors of School Sexual Abuse

The deadline to file a lawsuit for sexual abuse in a California school can vary. California passed Assembly Bill 218, which went into effect on January 1, 2020. This Assembly Bill extended the statute of limitations for many survivors of childhood abuse. You have the right to file a lawsuit against your abuser and any entity that didn’t prevent the abuse until you’re 40 years old or within five years of discovering you were abused, whichever is later.

AB 218 also established a “look back” window of three years. This change allows adult victims who suffered abuse as a child to file a sexual abuse lawsuit if the prior statute of limitations barred them from pursuing a claim if they file before January 1, 2023.. Understanding what deadline applies can be confusing. Fortunately, when you hire Silva Injury Law to represent you, we’ll file a lawsuit before the statute of limitations expires.

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Promoting Healing Through Compassionate Advocacy

We believe that our duty goes beyond achieving large monetary awards for our clients. We strive first to be decent human beings who seek not to stir up fights, but to solve problems.

As a peacemaker, the lawyer has a superior opportunity of being a good man. There will still be enough business.

- Abraham Lincoln

Contact Our California School Sexual Abuse Attorneys

If you or someone you love is the victim of sexual abuse in their school, contact Silva Injury Law today. We understand what a challenging and terrifying time this is for your family. We want to be there for you and help your family get the justice you deserve.

Attorney Michael Joe Silva previously worked as a prosecutor in Merced County. He understands what it takes to win a criminal trial and the importance of presenting solid evidence. He uses his criminal trial experience to help build the best civil case possible. Contact our office today to schedule a no-obligation consultation to learn how we can help you get justice in a school sexual abuse case.

Our highly-skilled legal team also handles other cases, such as: