Virginia Sexual Abuse
Many people have suffered sexual abuse at the hands of a trusted individual. Most of us are familiar with cases of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church due to several media publicized cases of priest sexual abuse, but church sex scandals are just one example of an issue that affects many in Virginia. Virginia sexual abuse also occurs at schools, camps, nursing homes, mental health facilities, and other places where circumstances allow. Speaking out about sexual abuse is important in two ways: It can stop the abuser from hurting anyone else and it helps bring a sense of closure for the abuse survivor. Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell signed a bill which goes into effect July 1, 2011 that increases the time limit in which sexual abuse victims can seek damages to 20 years. Speaking out can be scary, but you and your loved ones are not alone. Lawyers such as Sam Rogatinsky specialize in helping you find your voice in court.
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 Virginia 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 this form of abuse is common enough that Virginia law requires school boards to notify the state Board of Education within 10 days if a licensed employee is dismissed or resigns because of a criminal conviction or a founded child-abuse or neglect charge.
Children are not the only victims, however. At nursing homes and mental health facilities all over Virginia, 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.
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. 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.
Virginia’s Civil Statute of Limitations on Sexual Abuse
Virginia has its own statute of limitations regarding sexual abuse. This statute of limitations places a cap on the length of time in which someone can be taken to civil court for having committed sexual abuse. It is important to take action before the statute of limitations runs out, leaving no other way to make the abuser pay.
Title 8.01 – CIVIL REMEDIES AND PROCEDURE.
Current law provides up to two years for victims of sexual abuse to file suit, but effective as of July 1, 2011, the current statute of limitations is extended to twenty years.
- Richmond Times-Dispatch. April 20, 2011. Sexual Abuse Victims Get 20 Years to File Suit.
- Martinsville Bulletin. March 25, 2011. State Board Oks Misconduct Guidelines.
- Virginia Legislative Data: http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp504.exe?000+cod+TOC0800100
If you or someone you know has been a victim of sexual abuse, contact our law firm at (954) 995-3805 or send an email to sexual abuse lawyer Samuel Rogatinsky at firstname.lastname@example.org