Texas Sexual Abuse

Many people have suffered sexual abuse at the hands of someone they trusted. Most of us are familiar with cases of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church due to the highly publicized cases of priest sexual abuse, but church sex scandals are just one example of an issue that affects many in Texas. Texas sexual abuse also occurs at schools, camps, nursing homes, mental health facilities, and other places where circumstances allow. One such example is prison, where Texas leads the country in reports of sexual abuse cases. Speaking out about sexual abuse is important in two ways: It can stop the abuser from hurting others and it helps bring a sense of closure for the victim. Speaking out can feel intimidating, but you and your loved ones are not alone. Lawyers such as Sam Rogatinsky specialize in helping you find your voice in court.


Sexual Abuse

Unlike clergy abuse, sexual abuse can be perpetrated by anyone and occur anywhere. The most common places for sexual abuse to occur are schools, camps, nursing homes, mental health facilities, group homes, and organizations such as the Boy and Girl Scouts of America. Countless children have been sexually abused in Texas by those who were entrusted with their care, such as teachers, Boy Scout leaders, camp counselors, and so on. These adults are supposed to protect children, but instead cause them harm. One example of such abuse is the case of the Masonic Grand Lodge of Texas’ Masonic Home and School which settled out of court for $6.9 million in 1999 due to several sexual abuse accusations from former students.

Adults also suffer sexual abuse at the hands of the very people entrusted to care for them. At nursing homes and mental health facilities all over Texas, social workers and psychologists take advantage of the vulnerable adults that they are supposed to be protecting. Fortunately, the perpetrators can be made to pay for the pain they have caused, but you must seek representation. Sam will help to make sure that everything possible is done to assure that your suffering has not been in vain.


Clergy Abuse

Although the Catholic Church is not the only venue for sexual abuse, it has been the most publicized due to the lack of bishop accountability. When the media picked up on the fact that bishops were just moving sexually abusive priests to another church, news outlets ran with the story. The truth is that clergy abuse includes not only Catholic priests, but rabbis, ministers, reverends, pastors, office staff at places of worship, religious youth directors, and anyone who works for a place of worship. For example, Guru Prakashanand Saraswati has been charged with 20 counts of child sexual abuse and convicted of indecency with a child by sexual contact for molesting girls in his ashram, or place of worship. If you or someone you know has been sexually abused by someone in this category, you now have an avenue of help available to you. You do not have to be a victim anymore. Contact Sam to find out how you can take control of what happened and help make sure it doesn’t happen to others.


Texas Sexual Abuse and Clergy Abuse Statute of Limitations

The state of Texas has a 5-year statute of limitations for sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, or continuous sexual abuse of a young child or children.

If the sexual abuse survivor is a minor at the time of the sexual or clergy abuse, the statute of limitations is tolled until the child reaches the age of 18 and then the victim has five years from his 18th birthday to file a claim. So a sexual abuse or clergy abuse survivor would have up to the age of 23 to file a claim.

The Texas Supreme Court applies a case-by-case discovery rule. However, as a general rule, they have held that the statute of limitations will begin to run when a wrongful act causes some legal injury, even if the fact of injury is not discovered until later, and even if all resulting damages have not yet occurred.

However, there have been cases where the SOL did not start to run until the plaintiff discovered, or through the exercise of reasonable care and diligence should have discovered, the nature of the injury. See S.V. v. R.V., 933 S.W.2d 1 (Tex. 1996); Vesecky v. Fenwick, 880 S.W.2d 804 (Tex. App. 1994).

In other words, if a reasonable person would know that something bad happened, then the statute would start to run from the date of that bad thing happening.

If you were sexually abused by a priest, rabbi, coach, psychologist or any other person who sexually abused you, please don’t feel ashamed. We want to help you.


Contact me, sexual abuse lawyer Samuel Rogatinsky at (954) 995-3805 or send an email to  samr@sexabuseattorney.org