New York City Sex Abuse Lawyer

Sexual abuse can leave scars that do not easily fade with time. If you or a loved one were sexually abused in New York City (NYC), contact Edwards Pottinger to speak with an NYC sex abuse lawyer today.

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Key Takeaways

  • Sexual abuse refers to any nonconsensual sexual contact, whether physical, emotional, or mental, and may even involve violence, manipulation, and/or coercion.
  • In New York, child sexual abuse means any sexual act with a child who is under the age of 17 years.
  • The Adult Survivors Act gives adult survivors of sexual abuse a one-year lookback window to file any sexual abuse claims that are otherwise expired.

Legal Representation for Sexual Abuse Survivors in NYC

Sexual abuse can leave mental, emotional, and physical scars that do not easily fade with time. Regardless of when the assault took place, the trauma of sexual abuse may manifest as depression, substance abuse, PTSD, anxiety, and other detrimental consequences. Sexual abuse survivors may be able to hold their abuser as well as any other parties complicit in the abuse accountable by filing a sex abuse lawsuit. Pursuing legal action may give the survivor the closure they need to begin the healing process.

The sexual abuse lawyers of Edwards Pottinger are nationally recognized litigators that are dedicated to advocating on behalf of survivors of sexual abuse, protecting their rights, and fighting for the compensation they deserve. If you or a loved one were sexually abused, contact the New York City sex abuse lawyers of Edwards Pottinger today for a free legal consultation to see if filing a civil lawsuit is right for you.

What is Considered Sexual Abuse?

According to RAINN, the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network, someone is sexually assaulted in the United States every 68 seconds, and a child is sexually assaulted in the US every 9 minutes. In general, sexual abuse can be defined as any unwanted sexual contact, both physical and nonphysical. While sexual abuse may be physically violent, it does not have to be. Sexual abuse may be physical, emotional, or mental and may involve manipulation and coercion.

Sexual abuse includes:

  • Sexual harassment: Common in the workplace and schools, sexual harassment may involve unwanted sexual advances, verbal sexual harassment, and requests for sexual favors
  • Sexual assault: Physical acts of sexual violence including rape, molestation, incest, unwanted folding, or sodomy
  • Rape: Forced sexual contact with someone who is unable to consent or is too young to legally consent
  • Incest: Sexual acts between two relatives
  • Voyeurism or Exhibitionism: Viewing a child naked or a perpetrator exposing themselves to a child
  • Forced exposure to pornography

What is Child Sex Abuse?

In New York, child sex abuse refers to any sexual act with a child under the age of 17 years old. The sexual abuse of children is an unsettling problem in America, with experts estimating that 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 13 boys will experience some form of child sex abuse. In 91% of child sex abuse cases, the child knows and trusts the abuser, who could be a family member, neighbor, or teacher. NYC child sex abuse crimes commonly involve:

  • The possession of child pornography
  • Taking photos or videos of nude children
  • Exposing a child to pornography
  • Forcing or coercing a child into sexual acts

Who May Be Held Liable For Sexual Abuse in NYC?

Survivors of sexual abuse may be able to bring a civil tort claim for damages against their attacker as well as any third parties who could be found liable for the abuse that took place. Other parties who could potentially be held responsible for sexual abuse include:

  • Businesses and Organizations: Businesses or institutions like youth groups, church organizations, sports leagues, and more who are aware of sexual abuse but fail to stop it could be held liable for negligence.
  • Employers: Employers who fail to protect staff from foreseeable acts of violence could be found liable for damages that ensue.
  • Property owners and landlords: Property owners have a duty to ensure their property is safe for residents and guests from foreseeable acts of violence. If the property owner failed to take reasonable measures to do so, they may be held liable in a lawsuit.

What Compensation May Be Available for NYC Sex Abuse Survivors?

While financial compensation cannot change the mental, physical and emotional damage caused by sexual abuse, it can give survivors the resources that may need to find closure. It can also hold the perpetrator and any complicit parties responsible so that it does not happen again. Sexual abuse survivors can seek compensation for damages including:

  • Pain and suffering, including emotional trauma and distress
  • Medical bills, including the cost of therapy or counseling
  • Relevant lost income or wages
  • Punitive damages if the sexual abuse was particularly egregious

What is the Statute of Limitations for a Sexual Abuse Lawsuit in New York?

Childhood sexual abuse survivors have until the age of 55 to file a lawsuit against their attacker and any third-party defendants. Adult survivors of sexual abuse have 10 years to file a lawsuit for third-degree rape and 20 years for sexual abuse and second-degree rape.

What is the New York Adult Survivors Act?

Signed into law by New York Governor Kathy Hochul on May 24, 2022, the Adult Survivors Act gives adult survivors of sexual abuse a one-year “lookback window” to file any sexual abuse claims that are otherwise expired. If you survived sexual abuse but did not file a claim within the statute of limitations, this law allows you to file a lawsuit against your attacker regardless of when the sexual abuse took place.

Contact a New York City Sex Abuse Lawyer

Regardless of how old the survivor was when the abuse occurred, sexual abuse can cause devastating consequences in many aspects of life. By filing a sexual abuse lawsuit, sex abuse survivors can hold their abuser accountable and potentially receive financial compensation that can go towards medical bills, therapy, counseling, and whatever else the victim needs to feel whole again.

At Edwards Pottinger, our dedicated team of sex abuse attorneys has won multiple multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements on behalf of sex abuse survivors, including a $7.1 million settlement in a sexual assault case and a $1.1 million settlement in a rape case. If you or a loved one were sexually abused in NYC, contact Edwards Pottinger to speak with a New York City sex abuse lawyer today.

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Edwards Pottinger is a nationally-recognized powerhouse litigation firm, dedicated to providing its clients with the highest quality legal services and, at the same time, making substantial, positive changes for the common good.

We are skilled litigators and experienced trial attorneys who have effectively pursued civil lawsuits against some of the most powerful individuals, organizations and big businesses on behalf of people, victims and small businesses. In fact, we specialize in handling cases where the power differential is greatest and we can use our experience and resources to even the playing field. Our recent trial results speak for themselves.

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