Understanding Sexual Abuse Lawyers Serving Woodland Hills, California
Sexual abuse and molestation are serious problems in California and throughout the United States. The data is disturbing. According to the Child Molestation Research & Prevention Institute, one in five girls and one in 10 boys will be sexually abused before they become teenagers, with victims of abuse numbering into the millions. With the many high-profile cases we have seen recently, there is a common thread: abusers violate positions of authority or trust to perpetrate sexual abuse, often to multiple underage victims. Childhood sexual abuse affects the physical and emotional health of all it touches. If you are a parent of a child who has suffered sexual abuse or an adult survivor of childhood sexual abuse, getting the skilled assistance of a Woodland Hills molestation attorney can help you hold the abuser accountable and provide a sense of closure and healing. At Winer, Burritt & Scott, LLP, we can help.
People They Know And Trust
Most childhood sexual abuse is perpetrated by individuals that the child and family know and trust. These people can include:
- Scout leaders
- Athletic coaches
- Doctors or other healthcare providers
- Foster parents
Organizations, companies, and institutions that allow this behavior and fail to protect these children are also culpable.
If you are a parent who has discovered that your child has been sexually abused or an adult survivor of childhood sexual molestation, getting the legal guidance and assistance of an experienced Woodland Hills molestation attorney is critical to holding the abuser accountable.
At Winer, Burritt & Scott, we have handled a wide variety of these cases throughout our careers, helping to hold abusers accountable through civil lawsuits on behalf of the victim. These civil suits enable the survivor and family to recover financial compensation for the losses that their abuse caused.
“WB&S have successfully filed and won cases against organizations and entities such as religious institutions, school districts, youth groups, medical professionals, athletic leagues, more. Our Woodland Hills molestation attorney is skilled in litigating your abuse case against these organizations and their insurance carriers.
What Is Considered Child Molestation In California?
Molestation and childhood sexual abuse can take many forms. Most generally, it involves any sexually-related activity or conducts toward a minor. These can involve touching or non-touching behaviors as well as the exploitation of a child, including:
- Fondling or touching a child’s sexual organs
- Asking a child to fondle or touch an adult’s sexual organs
- Penetration of the child’s vagina or anus without a valid medical purpose
- Indecent exposure in front of a child
- Exposing a child to pornography
- Forcing a child to engage in pornography
The perpetrator may be criminally convicted for these actions and suffer a broad range of consequences, from misdemeanor charges to felonies.
There are other legal tools available to assist parents and survivors in holding abusers accountable. Filing a civil lawsuit against the abuser allows a survivor of childhood sexual abuse to recover compensation for their losses. The victim or parent may also bring a civil suit against the organization or institution that failed to stop the abuse or covered it up. At Winer, Burritt & Scott, LLP, our Woodland Hills molestation attorney can hold abusers accountable for the harm they have caused.
Legal Remedies For Childhood Sexual Abuse
In California and throughout the United States, there are many crimes associated with child sex abuse and laws that hold an abuser criminally accountable. Child molestation is defined by California Penal Code § 287, 288, 288.2, 288.3, 288.4, 288.5, 647.6, and 261.5. These are critical to punish abusers and keep others safe.
Unfortunately, holding the abuser criminally accountable for their crimes does little for their victims. While child abuse is covered under the state of California’s victim compensation fund, these funds may not be sufficient to make up for the losses you or your child have suffered.
In addition to the criminal process, a civil lawsuit can be filed against the perpetrator to compensate survivors of childhood sexual abuse. The California Child Victims Act also makes organizations and institutions accountable if they knew or should have known about the misconduct but failed to take reasonable actions to prevent it. A cover-up by the organization can entitle the victim to triple the amount of damages.
Filing a civil lawsuit against the perpetrator or organization can hold them financially accountable for your or your child’s damages, including:
- Medical expenses
- Therapy expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages
If you are an adult survivor of childhood sexual abuse or the parent of a child who has been abused, getting the assistance of an experienced Woodland Hills molestation attorney is critical to understand your rights and options under the law.
Getting Skilled Legal Assistance
At Winer, Burritt & Scott, our experienced Woodland Hills molestation lawyers can help you access all the remedies that our legal system affords to hold abusers accountable for their actions. If you are the parent of a child who has been sexually abused or is the victim of childhood sexual abuse yourself, call us or contact us at our website to schedule a free, confidential consultation to discuss your case.