Boca Raton Sexual Abuse Lawyer

December 22, 2023 | Attorney, Matthew Dolman

Sexual assault or abuse is devastating in ways that many people can't comprehend. Due to fear and worry of retaliation and embarrassment, most victims suffer in silence for years, if not decades. Many victims of sexual assault fear that no one will believe them. As a result, the abuser will get away with their actions, potentially sexually assaulting many more victims.

You can regain control with the aid of a Boca Raton sexual assault lawyer from Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA.

Justice and compensatory damages from sexual abuse are within reach with a legal advocate on your side. You can hold the abuser (and others who facilitated the behavior) accountable if you file a sexual abuse lawsuit. You can resolve your issue and prevent future victims from going through the same ordeal.

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Why Choose Our Boca Raton Sexual Abuse Lawyers?

Dolman Law Boca Raton Sexual Abuse Lawyer Team standing and sitting behind large table

Selecting Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, for your Boca Raton sexual abuse case is a crucial step toward securing justice and healing. Our legal professionals approach sexual abuse cases with the utmost compassion, recognizing the emotional toll on survivors.

With a history of successful outcomes in all types of personal injury cases, Dolman Law Group knows how to navigate the intricacies of sexual abuse claims. Our Boca Raton sexual abuse lawyers conduct comprehensive investigations, collaborating with experts to gather evidence that strengthens the survivor's case.

Dolman Law Group empowers survivors to come forward by providing legal guidance, advocacy, and support, aiming to bring about a sense of justice and closure.

Choosing Dolman Law Group for your Boca Raton sexual abuse case aligns you with a compassionate and experienced legal ally committed to advocating for your rights and well-being throughout the legal process.

What Is Sexual Abuse?

Sexual abuse, commonly called sexual assault and sexual violence, is "any sexual activity that occurs without consent." Therefore, any unwanted sexual acts or behavior made against you can qualify as sexual abuse.

Are There Different Forms of Sexual Abuse?

There are several different forms of sexual abuse. That said, not one form of sexual abuse is worse than the other. Each type of sexual abuse is physically, mentally, and emotionally damaging, and victims of sexual abuse often take years to recover. Here are a few examples of the different forms of sexual abuse:

  • Child sexual abuse: The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) defines child sexual abuse as "a form of child abuse that includes sexual activity with a minor." A child cannot give any consent to any type of sexual behavior. Therefore, it is a crime to have any sexual activity with a child. In Florida, the consenting age is 18, meaning that no child can legally have consensual sex until they turn 18 years of age. In addition, child sexual abuse can include making a child watch or participate in pornography, encouraging or forcing a child to watch adults involved in any sexual activity, and forcing a child to participate in prostitute acts.
  • Sexual battery: According to the Florida Statute 794.011, sexual battery is "oral, anal, or female genital penetration by, or union with, the sexual organ of another or the anal or female genital penetration of another by any other object." In Florida, the law differentiates sexual battery from other forms of sexual abuse based on the involvement of penetration. However, specific factors define an incident as sexual battery, including the victim's inability to resist the abuser, threats made by the abuser, drugging of the victim causing mental or physical impairment, awareness by the abuser of the victim's mental health disorder hindering their comprehension of sexual behavior, and the actual perpetration of sexual acts by the abuser. In contrast, the victim was asleep or unconscious, the abuser had a position of authority over the victim, or the victim was younger than 18.
  • Molestation: Florida Statute 800.04 states that "A person who intentionally touches in a lewd or lascivious manner the breasts, genitals, genital area, or buttocks, or the clothing covering them, of a person less than 16 years of age, or forces or entices a person under 16 years of age to so touch the perpetrator, commits lewd or lascivious molestation." Therefore, as you can see, molestation is a crime when the victim is below the age of 16, and it can occur when the child is clothed or unclothed. 
  • Sexual harassment: Sexual harassment is a term to describe various forms of sexual behavior that may occur in professional settings or other public interactions, such as in the workplace or online. Sexual harassment may involve unwanted sexual comments, physical touch, requests, advances, language, or any other type of behavior that makes the individual feel uncomfortable. Sexual harassment commonly refers to sexual acts that happen in an employment setting but can also describe behavior from an ex-partner or friend who continues to harass the victim. A few of the common ways that a person may become sexually harassed by an ex-partner or friend are stalking, unwanted sexual calls, unwanted sexual messages and emails, and more.

Hold Them Accountable for the Harm They Caused You

Sexual abuse may occur in many places in Boca Raton, but it is more likely in certain conditions and places. A church is one such example. Sexual abuse by a priest or other religious person is known as clergy abuse. Victims of clerical abuse are often children, although anybody can be a victim.

If a massage therapist or a healthcare professional engages with their clients or patients beyond acceptable bounds, sexual abuse may occur. University students may be victims of sexual assault during college, at clubs, at parties, seeking university healthcare, or participating in sports. Elders can be victims of sexual abuse at nursing homes. Young boys might have been victims of similar abuse while in the Boy Scouts and other organizations.

Reporting sexual abuse is vital to overcome the anguish, regardless of where or how it occurs. You can file a lawsuit against the abuser or other people in positions of power and influence. These parties can include:

  • Employers who neglected or failed to supervise their employees' behavior
  • Teaching staff that does not have a policy or rule to combat sexual misconduct

Are There Certain Signs That Indicate Someone You Know Suffered Sexual Abuse?

signs of sexual abuse

If you believe someone may be a victim of sexual abuse, there are a few warning signs that you should be on the lookout for. However, you must remember that the warning signs may differ for adults and children. For your convenience, we will provide signs for adults, teenagers, and children below.

Warning signs of sexual abuse in adults:

  • Sexually transmitted diseases or infections
  • Depression
  • Less energy than usual
  • Sleep problems
  • Seeming distant or withdrawn
  • Uninterested in usual activities
  • Lack of an appetite
  • Low confidence and self-esteem
  • Seeming embarrassed or paranoid
  • High Anxiety
  • No longer interested in going to certain places or areas
  • New or increasing interest in drinking or doing drugs

Warning signs of sexual abuse in teenagers:

  • Lack of appetite or overeating
  • Increased anxiety, fear, or worry
  • Quick weight loss or weight gain
  • Bruises, cuts, or any other signs of abuse or self-harming
  • New interest in drinking or doing drugs
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • No interest in school
  • Sexually transmitted diseases or infections
  • Depression
  • Fatigue
  • Sleep problems
  • Withdrawing or distancing from friends or family
  • Spending a lot of time alone
  • Not caring about hygiene or appearance
  • Self-conscious or lack of confidence

Warning signs of sexual abuse in young children:

  • Sexually transmitted diseases or infections
  • Inability to eat or no interest in eating
  • Not communicating or talking as much as normal
  • Mood swings or aggression
  • Seeming frightened or worried
  • Recurring headaches and stomach pain
  • No interest in school or not wanting to go to school
  • Having nightmares
  • Sleep issues
  • Not wanting to be alone
  • Regressive behaviors
  • Showing signs or talking about sexual acts or behavior that they should not know about
  • Bruising, bleeding, or trauma to the genitals

If you notice any warning signs among your children, friends, family members, classmates, or coworkers, you must inform them that you are safe to talk to. Explain that you have their best interests and are concerned about their well-being. If they confide in you, explain to them that they should file a police report and seek help right away.

The longer that they allow the sexual abuse to go on, the worse that it may become. If they refuse to tell anyone or are a minor, you may have to make the report yourself or tell their parents. When reporting sexual abuse about someone else, you'll need to provide the person's name, describe the situation or information you received, and explain how you came to know about it.

When talking to a sexual abuse victim, you must never show any signs of judging the person. Instead, you should simply be a shoulder to lean on and a helping hand during these tough times.

When victims are ready to report the matter, they should also consult our Boca Raton sexual abuse attorneys at Dolman Law Group. We know how to discuss and approach traumatic and emotionally challenging issues, including sexual abuse.

Why Should You File a Civil Claim Against a Perpetrator?

File a Civil Claim Against a Perpetrator in Boca Raton

When considering filing a civil claim against a perpetrator, you may wonder why you should pursue this legal route. The Boca Raton sexual abuse lawyers from Dolman Law Group want you to know, first and foremost, that this is your choice to make.

While we can advise you on your rights, the decision to take legal action is yours alone. Case evaluations are not obligated to hire our firm to proceed with a claim.

While filing a sexual abuse injury claim might seem stressful, some of the advantages of taking legal action can include:

  • You can receive compensation to cover your losses: Your attorney will protect your rights and demand the maximum compensation. This compensation amount cannot return the old you before the incident occurred. Still, navigating this unimaginably difficult time can aid in covering medical expenses, lost income, psychology fees, pain and suffering, mental and emotional trauma, and more.
  • You can hold the perpetrator accountable for their terrible behavior: One of the most favorable advantages of filing a civil claim against a perpetrator is holding them accountable for their harmful behavior. Since sexual abuse can typically be challenging to show proof of in criminal court, a civil claim allows you to get the justice you need and deserve as quickly as possible. We know and understand that you may want to see them suffer like they made you suffer, which is why we will step in and ensure that they know exactly what they have done to you and how they have negatively impacted your life. Ultimately, we can assure you that we aggressively stood up and fought for the compensation owed to you.
  • You can ensure that others do not become a victim or endure the same pain and trauma as you: You may be hesitant and intimidated about pursuing a civil claim. While this is completely understandable, you should think about other victims whom the perpetrator may have abused and taken advantage of as well. It is very common for a perpetrator to abuse more than one victim, meaning that there can be a handful of individuals who are afraid to come forward and admit what happened to them. That said, you can be a voice for them and ensure that the perpetrator does not get away with their disgraceful and horrific behavior.

The Evidence That You Need to Build a Strong Case

Evidence is one of the key factors in a sexual abuse case. Therefore, if you are thinking about filing a sexual abuse claim, you should take the time to gather any information and documents that you think may be helpful to your case.

If you're unsure about the essential types of evidence, our Boca Raton sexual abuse attorneys are ready to guide and support you in collecting the necessary evidence to back your claim. The following are some of the different types of evidence that you may need to build a strong case:

  • Photographs: Photos are very helpful evidence pieces as they clearly show specific information. Photographs of your injuries, the perpetrator, or the location of the incident are all essential photographs you can provide to your lawyer to support your case.
  • Videos: Just like photos, videos are another helpful piece of evidence. A few different types of videos that may be supportive in a sexual abuse case are videos of your injuries, videos of the sexual abuse incident, and videos of the location where the sexual abuse occurred. If you cannot record any videos, your attorney may visit the location and explore the possibility of using nearby surveillance cameras for your case.
  • Screenshots: Screenshots are critical to these types of cases. For example, sexual abuse victims often submit screenshots of text messages, emails, and social media messaging. These screenshots may show conversations with details about the sexual abuse incident.
  • Eyewitness statements: If anyone saw or was around when your sexual abuse incident occurred, you may want to ask them if they will be willing to give a testimony about what they saw or know about the perpetrator. This will benefit your case as it shows that your information is factual.
  • Police report: When you file a police report, you can request a copy. This report will show everything you said to the officer and what they wrote about the incident.
  • Documentation: Immediately after the sexual abuse incident, you should begin documenting everything. You should write down anything you remember, such as what the perpetrator looks like, how you feel, any illnesses or injuries that emerge, and more. This may be very hard to do as you most likely do not want to remember or think about the sexual abuse act, but this information is crucial to the success of your case.
  • Medical records: Your medical records are another essential evidence piece. This is because they show what the doctor wrote down or said, what type of injuries or infections you have, and, most importantly, that you are being truthful.
  • Reports from psychologist or counselor: Many sexual abuse victims must visit with a psychologist or counselor to learn how to cope and manage their thoughts and feelings. That said, your psychologist or counselor will write down and make reports about what you tell them and how they think you are doing. This information is beneficial in proving how the perpetrator affected you mentally and emotionally.

You Could Recover Compensation After Suffering Sexual Abuse in Boca Raton

Civil justice is concerned with compensating victims hurt as a result of the actions of others. You can show that the alleged perpetrator harmed you and you are entitled to compensation. In proceedings alleging sexual assault, you can use monetary damages as a form of remedy.

Money cannot erase the past; that much is true. It can, however, assist the abused party in obtaining strength and resources helpful to relieve some of the pain. Compensation should cover the following:

  • Trauma and emotional discomfort
  • Expenses for mental health counseling and other therapies, both past and present
  • Relationship damages caused by sexual abuse

Every situation is different. The instances shown above are merely a fraction of what all victims must have gone through throughout the world. Any sexual action should require the consent of all people involved. If one does not give approval, a sexual activity can be criminal as sexual abuse, sexual assault, or rape.

How Dolman Law Group Can Help You After a Sexual Assault

Mattew Dolman, Sexual Abuse Lawyer in Boca Raton

Our Boca Raton lawyers advise anyone considering legal action for sexual abuse to establish an emotional support system to ensure they remain in the best possible frame of mind. It's essential to be calm and collected before weighing the decisions arising during the legal process. In our experience, having the support of a professional counselor or therapist's support can benefit clients.

Any forced and unwanted sexual interaction with another person is considered sexual abuse. Rape, molestation, clerical abuse, and unwanted sexual contact are only a few instances of illegal sexual behavior. Although women make up the majority of victims, sexual abusers can also target men with the same horrible actions.

A sexual abuse lawyer can seek the money you need. You can file a lawsuit against your assailant and others who may have contributed to the abuse. It's wise not to worry about whether the case will go to court or what proof you must compile. Let a lawyer worry about those details. Obtaining a lawyer is a solid first step to relieve some of the pain you've endured.

We Charge No Upfront Cost to Sexual Abuse Victims Seeking Civil Justice

You will not have to pay a penny during the legal process if you hire our lawyers. Dolman Law Group operates on a contingency-fee-basis, meaning we only get paid if our clients receive compensation. We receive a part of your earnings. Our paycheck depends on your settlement or judgment. So, this is another motivator to secure a fair result for you.

What Is Dolman Law Group's Reputation?

When a sexual assault survivor comes to our team with concerns about holding an abuser or institution accountable, we usually sit down and listen to their experience. In these discussions, we attempt to demonstrate compassion and respect since we must ask questions that bring up terrible memories.

Our lawyers are ready to assist anybody who has experienced sexual abuse in Boca Raton in assessing their legal options and determining the best course of action for them. Every victim is treated with respect and care by our team. We won't push you if you don't want to pursue legal action. Our role is to:

  • Listen to you
  • Offer you an initial assessment of your alternatives
  • Guide you in choosing the best course of action

Contact Us for a Free Boca Raton Sexual Abuse Case Consultation

What you do next is critical if you have suffered abuse, assault, or rape. Your Boca Raton injury lawyer must obtain evidence as soon as possible so you'll have a solid foundation in filing a claim or lawsuit.

The compassionate, dedicated Boca Raton sexual abuse attorneys at Dolman Law Group want to provide support. We can answer questions about seeking justice and compensation from an abuser or an organization that allowed sexual abuse against you to occur, even if the abuse occurred many years ago. Call (561) 220-4963 for your free consultation.


Matthew Dolman

Personal Injury Lawyer

This article was written and reviewed by Matthew Dolman. Matt has been a practicing civil trial, personal injury, products liability, and mass tort lawyer since 2004. He has successfully fought for more than 11,000 injured clients and acted as lead counsel in more than 1,000 lawsuits. Always on the cutting edge of personal injury law, Matt is actively engaged in complex legal matters, including Suboxone, AFFF, and Ozempic lawsuits.  Matt is a lifetime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum for resolving individual cases in excess of $1 million and $2 million, respectively. He has also been selected by his colleagues as a Florida Superlawyer and as a member of Florida’s Legal Elite on multiple occasions. Further, Matt has been quoted in the media numerous times and is a sought-after speaker on a variety of legal issues and topics.

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