Alarming Statistics Regarding Sexual AssaultAccording to the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN), an American is sexually assaulted every 73 seconds. Sexual assault does not discriminate against gender or age. The following statistics are both eye-opening and alarming to who is vulnerable for such a traumatic experience:
- One out of every 6 women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape.
- Ages 12-34 are the highest risk years for rape and sexual assault.
- 21 percent of transgender, genderqueer, nonconforming (TGQN) report being sexually assaulted.
- One out of every 10 rape victims are men.
- Shame: survivors believe they are bad or flawed
- Guilt: survivors think the assault was their fault
- Denial: survivors claim they are fine or minimize the event as a one-time occurrence
- Problems with trust: survivors find it hard to trust others
Perpetrator Statistics: Who Commits Sexual Assault?Information provided by RAINN shows that when it comes to sexual assault, many victims know their attacker:
- 59 percent are acquaintances
- 34 percents are family members
- 7 percent were strangers to the victim
- One in seven women and one in 17 men have sought a new assignment, changed jobs, or quit due to sexual harassment or a sexual assault.
- Sixty percent of women say they have experienced unwanted sexual advances or coercion in the workplace.
Long Term Effects of Sexual Assault for VictimsThere is no quick recovery from a sexual assault as victims must deal with the trauma's effects. Long-term effects of a sexual assault include:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- More likely to use drugs than the public
- Panic attacks
- Persistent fear
- Sense of helplessness
- Relationship difficulties
Criminal versus Civil CasesSexual assault is a crime, and any relating charges move through the criminal court system. Many perpetrators are familiar with the court system —of every 1,000 cases, an average of 370 have at least one prior felony conviction. The outcome of a criminal case has no bearing on your right to pursue a civil case for your damages. A personal injury claim and lawsuit—if successful—can serve as a form of justice for the trauma you experienced. The damages you suffered may include:
- Physical injuries
- Mental anguish
- Lost wages
- Loss of future earnings if returning to your job is impossible
- Therapy and counseling for the emotional, mental, and psychological harm you experienced
Insurance Companies and Your Sexual AssaultA sexual assault at work, an event, or a medical facility is preventable if security measures are in place. Failure to conduct a proper background check, maintain security cameras, or protect those invited onto the property from harm demands action. Once the facility, perpetrator, or both discover you plan to pursue legal action, they may contact you. The insurance company wants to close your claim as quickly as possible. Insurance adjusters use tactics designed to confuse you. Accepting a settlement without a lawyer present only benefits the insurance company and not you. The offer may seem like a large amount that you can use to pay bills. The insurance company is most likely offering the least amount of money possible. They want to pay you—the assault victim—as little compensation as possible. If you accept their settlement offer, you cannot pursue legal action later. When you develop complications from your assault, it is generally impossible to pursue another claim or lawsuit. Your case is now considered settled and closed. A sexual assault is terrifying, and victims deserve justice. The stress of the assault can make you anxious and stressed for days, weeks, and months to come. For some survivors, the process takes forever, and the pain never disappears.
Personal Injury Lawyers Care About Their ClientsYou may feel anxious about discussing your case with a lawyer. Reliving the details of your assault is never easy. Providing your lawyer with a police report, photographs of your injuries, and as many details as possible can help them prepare your case. A free case evaluation by a friendly and caring attorney is a good place to start. This important first step can alleviate your concerns as you learn more about how a lawyer can assist you. Personal injury lawyers work to secure the best outcome for their client's case. They listen to sexual assault survivors, connect them with resources if necessary, and support them by providing consistent communication. Most personal injury lawyers work on a no-fee basis. This means they collect no fee unless they secure compensation for you. A personal injury lawyer will treat you with compassion while aggressively fighting for the compensation you need and deserve.
Time Is Ticking for Pursuing JusticeThe statute of limitations binds civil cases. You must file your personal injury lawsuit within a required deadline or lose your chance forever. The overwhelming emotions you experience following your sexual assault can cause you to miss the filing deadline. The nightmares, depression, and other outcomes of a sexual assault are not fair. The trauma you experienced, however, demands that the perpetrator and those who failed their duty of care face accountability. This is why it's important to move quickly, and ensure the justice system holds these bad actors accountable.
Personal Injury Lawyers Help Sexual Assault SurvivorsA sexual assault impacts your life significantly, from your ability to sleep to the ability to trust others. For children, the long-term effects are many and why caring for their emotional health is crucial for the healing process. A personal injury lawyer fights for sexual assault survivors. Whether during insurance company negotiations or at trial, they leave no stone unturned in proving negligence. There is no “getting over a sexual assault.” There is also no quick resolution to most civil cases. Many personal injury cases settle out of court; however, a personal injury lawyer can take your case to trial if necessary. The knowledge that you are not alone can provide a level of comfort during this challenging time. Hiring a lawyer can protect you from assertive insurance adjusters who refuse to take no for an answer. Your recovery is too important to leave to chance. Consider placing your case in the hands of a qualified, professional attorney. They have no problem standing up to insurance companies that try to pressure survivors into a low-dollar settlement.
Sexual Assault and Its Long-Term Effects Are Serious, and Demand ActionThe long-term effects of a sexual assault range from PTSD to poor health. Caring for yourself or a loved one is your top priority as you navigate your way back to a somewhat normal routine. That routine may not include your career if that is the location of the assault or your stress prevents it. Reducing or losing income can devastate you as you receive medical bills for your physical and mental health care. If you have the terrible burden of a sexual assault resting on your shoulders, an attorney can help you. Allowing an attorney to lift the burden and to represent you with insurance companies can afford you more time to focus on yourself. Helping your child work through a sexual assault or abuse leaves you no time to handle a legal claim and lawsuit. Consistent communication from your attorney can provide you peace of mind as you access resources that can help your child. A personal injury lawsuit can serve as a form of justice. The potential is too important for holding the perpetrator accountable for the harm they caused you or your child.