Turlock Sexual Assault Lawyers
Sexual assault victims suffer devastating and traumatic repercussions as a result of the crime committed against them. Sexual assault victims often face physical and emotional trauma, expensive hospital bills, mental health treatment, time away from work, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and a variety of other negative consequences in the aftermath of their assault. While nothing can undo the assault you have faced, there are ways to push back, hold your attacker accountable, and fight for your rights and the compensation you need and deserve. The Turlock sexual assault attorneys at Silva Injury Law can help you do just that.
The State of California allows victims of sexual assault to sue their attacker in civil court and hold them responsible for the harm they caused.
We understand that sexual assault is a sensitive topic and is never pleasant to discuss. However, a civil suit can provide an avenue to recover monetary compensation, which can help you alleviate your financial burden and give you a sense of closure.
If you are a sexual assault victim in or near Turlock, CA, we want to help. Contact our Turlock sexual assault attorneys today to discuss your case and see what our team can do for you.
- If you are being abused, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or 1-800-787-3224 (TTY) or visit thehotline.org
- If you are a teen being abused call the National Teen Dating Helpline at 1-866-331-9474 or visit loveisrespect.org
- If you have been raped or experienced sexual violence, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673 or visit rainn.org
- For safety planning, safe shelter, and counseling, contact W.E.A.V.E.: When Everyone Acts Violence Ends 1-866-920-2952 weaveinc.org
What Sexual Assault Crimes Authorize A Civil Suit?
Any victim of a sex crime that occurs in California may bring a civil suit against his or her attacker. Sex crimes in California include:
- Sexual abuse of a child,
- Sexual harassment,
- Indecent exposure,
- Sexual assault by rideshare drivers or medical providers, and
- Any sexual act that was nonconsensual.
In some cases you may even be able to sue a person or entity whose negligence contributed to your attack, in addition to the actual perpetrator. This is because California tort law allows you to sue for damages where someone owed you a duty to keep you safe and they subsequently breached that duty, resulting in harm to you.
For example, you might have a claim against:
- An employer where your sexual assault or harassment occurred while at work;
- The owners or an establishment where your assault took place;
- A company that negligently hired an employee who committed the assault; or
- A landowner whose inadequate security led to your sexual assault on their property.
These are just a few examples of scenarios in which you might have a claim against someone in addition to the actual perpetrator of your attack. If you have questions about whether and against whom you may have a legal claim, don’t hesitate to contact the Turlock sexual assault attorneys at Silva Injury Law, Inc. today.
Does My Attacker Have To Be Charged Or Convicted?
Most people are aware that the state can bring criminal charges against someone for sexual assault. However, many do not realize that the individual victim may also pursue civil claims.
Holding your attacker accountable in civil court provides an avenue for compensation and punishment that is completely separate and distinct from the criminal justice system. As such, a criminal charge or conviction is not required before you can pursue a civil claim against your attacker. In fact, you can sue your attacker even if they were acquitted of criminal charges.
Nevertheless, a criminal conviction against your attacker can help establish the existence of the sexual assault in your civil case.
Regardless of whether your attacker has been criminally charged or convicted, give our Turlock sexual assault attorneys a call today to discuss your options moving forward.
Potential Defenses To Sexual Assault
Individuals charged with sexual assault typically present a number of defenses in an attempt to avoid a conviction. Common defenses to sexual assault charges include:
- The statute of limitations has expired;
- The sexual assault did not occur;
- The defendant was wrongfully accused;
- The defendant was wrongfully identified; and
- The sexual act was consensual.
A defendant presenting a defense in a sexual assault case is not uncommon.
Understandably, it can be difficult to hear your attacker raise these types of defenses, especially if those defenses are not applicable or true. However, an experienced Turlock sexual assault attorney can help explain what these defenses mean, find evidence to disprove such defenses, and demonstrate how and why the defense does not apply in your case.
At Silva Injury Law, Inc. we know how painful it can be to go through this time of lawsuit. But we will be there with you at every step along the way as we fight for your rights and recovery.
Damages Recoverable For Sexual Assault Victims
Filing a civil claim authorizes sexual assault victims to seek monetary compensation for the harm they suffered as a result of sexual assault or sexual harassment. Damages often claimed by sexual assault victims include:
- Therapy costs,
- Medical bills,
- Lost wages,
- Pain and suffering,
- Loss of enjoyment of life,
- Anxiety treatment,
- Psychological treatment, and
- Treatment for PTSD.
The circumstances of each claim dictate the amount of recovery the sexual assault victim is entitled to recover. Contact an experienced Turlock sexual harassment attorney today to discuss your claims and see what damages you might be entitled to recover.
Other Frequently Asked Questions About Civil Sexual Assault Cases
You probably have many questions about how the actual lawsuit and trial procedure works. If the sections below still don’t address your concerns, contact the Turlock team at Silva Injury law and one of our experts will be happy to help.
How Is a Civil Sexual Assault Case Different from a Criminal Case?
Where the victim brings a civil sexual assault claim against the defendant or other liable parties, the government is the plaintiff in criminal assault cases. The point of the criminal case is to punish the defendant for violating criminal laws. Sometimes the court orders the defendant to pay restitution to the victim, but that is not the objective of the case. However, the entire purpose of a civil case is to compensate victims for injuries they suffered, including past and future related expenses. Furthermore, there is a less strict standard of proof for civil cases. Whereas criminal cases must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt, civil cases only require proof based on a preponderance of the evidence.
How Long Do I Have to File My Case?
The time you have to file a complaint after a sexual assault depends on what age you were when the crime happened. If you were at least 18, you have 10 years from the date of the last act. Alternatively, you have three years from the date that you discovered your injury, or should have discovered it, whichever is greater. Some felony acts, such as aggravated rape, do not have a statute of limitations at all.
What If I Can’t Afford an Attorney?
Civil sexual assault cases are personal injury cases, and fees are done on a contingency basis. Our payment is based upon a percentage of your settlement. This means that our firm advances the fees and costs and we do not make any money unless you do.
What Happens After I Hire an Attorney?
Your Turlock sexual assault attorney will investigate the claim to gain a thorough understanding of the facts of your case. This may involve speaking to law enforcement and the District Attorney, analyzing police reports, and examining the defendant’s criminal history and background. Your attorney will put together an estimate of your damages, and file the complaint in court, which begins your case. Next, your attorney and the defendant’s attorney will gather evidence, likely through written questions and witness interviews. Any possible settlement usually occurs at this stage. If not, your attorney will synthesize all the evidence and present it to the judge and jury at trial.
How Can A Turlock Sexual Assault Lawyer Help Me Win My Civil Case?
Navigating a civil sexual assault or harassment claim can be an emotional, time-consuming, and complicated process. But know that you don’t have to go through this process alone.
A Turlock sexual assault lawyer in your corner is one of the best assets you can have in your fight for justice. An attorney can help you:
- Gather evidence to help prove your claims;
- Assess the amount of damages you may be able to recover;
- Negotiate potential settlements with the opposing party where applicable; and
- Prepare for and take your case to trial to hold your attacker accountable in a court of law.
In short, a lawyer can be a zealous advocate for you in your fight for justice. But more than that, the Turlock sexual assault lawyers at Silva Injury Law, Inc. will provide you with the support and compassion you need and deserve in these difficult and emotionally challenging times.
Take Back Control Of Your Life Today
At Silva Injury Law, Inc. we believe that you deserve justice in the aftermath of the harms you have suffered. With our team of Turlock sexual assault lawyers, that justice is within reach.
We will do everything within our power to hold your attacker accountable and get you the justice and compensation that you need.
Our team comprises experienced trial lawyers, and we will not take on any case that we are not prepared to present to a jury. We will never settle for less than what you deserve.
Our experienced legal team also handles other types of injury cases, including:
- Car Accident
- Dog Bite
- Slip and Fall
- Truck Accident
- Motorcycle Accident
- Wrongful Death
- Pedestrian Accident
- Drunk Driving Accident
- Distracted Driving Accident
- Bicycle Accident
- Nursing Home Abuse
If you suffered a sexual assault crime, contact us today. We care and we are here to help.