New York Sexual Abuse Attorney
No parent wants to imagine his or her child is a victim of sexual abuse. This is one of the most tragic experiences a person can undergo. When sexual abuse happens to a child, parents may feel at a loss as to how to proceed. It is possible to file criminal and civil charges against the alleged perpetrator for child sexual abuse. It is not only a crime in New York City but also an act of civil negligence or wrongdoing. Pursuing both types of claims can lead to punishment for the offender’s actions as well as financial compensation for your family. For help with these serious cases, come to Meirowitz & Wasserberg, LLP, to speak to a New York City sexual abuse lawyer.
Signs Of Child Sexual Abuse
The first step toward justice for your sexual abuse case is recognizing that it is occurring. Unless your loved one comes forward and talks openly about his or her victimization, it may be up to you to notice signs of sexual abuse and make the first move. No matter the age of your child, there are certain signs of abuse for which you can watch. In fact, New York passed a new law increasing the age a victim can report sex abuse, giving victims more time to come forward. As soon as you notice something amiss, speak with your child about the matter. Then, pursue justice for sexual abuse allegations through the police and a personal injury lawyer.
Here are a few things that may point to sexual abuse:
- Physical signs: Bruising on the upper thighs, difficulty walking, injuries to the genital areas and bloody underwear may all point to sexual abuse. Watch for physical changes in your child such as unexplained injuries or rapid weight loss or gain. Take your child to a doctor for any physical evidence you believe points to abuse. Keep medical records for future use.
- Emotional signs: Sexual abuse often does more emotional harm than physical. Myriad emotional changes in your child could potentially point to abuse. Look for depression, anxiety, anger, feelings of guilt or shame, nightmares, trouble sleeping, loss of appetite, secretive actions and low self-esteem.
- Behavioral signs: Watch for sudden changes in your child’s behavior, such as poor performance at school or violent outbursts. Compulsive eating, lack of personal hygiene, running away from home, self-injury, lack of interest in favorite hobbies, and age-inappropriate sexual behaviors or knowledge can all indicate abuse.
The moment you suspect sexual abuse in your family, talk to the proper authorities. Report your suspicions to the police or to the employer of the alleged offender. If the perpetrator is an employee at a school or day care center, take your case to the company. Sexual abuse is a criminal offense that should involve the police. Once a criminal investigation is underway, retain an attorney to pursue the civil side of your claim.
Civil Remedies For Sexual Abuse In NYC
A criminal lawsuit against a sex offender can lead to a conviction and appropriate punishment, such as jail time and a permanent record. It will not, however, lead to retribution for your child’s harms. Only a civil claim will result in payment for medical bills, physical pain, emotional suffering and mental anguish. In a sexual abuse case, a civil claim could also result in punitive damages for the defendant’s unlawful actions. A monetary award can’t reverse your child’s trauma after a case of sexual abuse, but it can go a long way toward securing his or her future. It can pay for ongoing therapy to help your child recover from this terrible wrongdoing. Contact our firm for a free case evaluation.