Child sexual abuse survivors living in Maryland now have a chance to seek justice for their suffering and trauma. The state’s Child Victims Act of 2023 enables claimants to file civil lawsuits regardless of how long the abuse occurred. Parents of child victims should know all available options and procedures. At times like these, families must work with competent personal injury attorneys to understand the form of legal strategy they need.
A Guide for Seeking Reparations in Cases of Serious Personal Injury Involving Minors
The Maryland Child Victims Act of 2023 changes the state’s former legal time limit on civil lawsuits for child sexual abuse survivors, which previously barred those abused as children from taking action after turning 38. The new legislation opens a reconsidering space that allows all survivors to sue their abuser and eliminates specific caps on damages from individuals and public entities. Below are strategies survivors and their families can use to pursue reparations rightfully owed to them.
Consult a Competent Sexual Abuse Injury Attorney
The steps necessary for filing a lawsuit in a child sex abuse case can be intricate as they will vary depending on the circumstances of each claim. It is vital that survivors seek legal guidance from attorneys familiar with the personal injury laws in question as soon as possible. A child victim personal injury attorney can advise on the disclosure of publicly available information, gathering evidence, and other critical practical matters related to litigation strategies.
Collect Accurate Documentation
Child sexual abuse survivors typically require evidence to prove their claim for financial compensation under the 2023 Child Victims Act. While each case will be unique, there are some documents survivors should gather before speaking to an attorney or filing a legal action, such as:
- Photos or any other media related to the abuse.
- Relevant medical reports and results from psychological evaluations.
- Correspondences with relevant parties, such as the abuser and witnesses.
- Police reports or any other investigative documents concerning the case.
Having a list of accurate documentation helps simplify all legal proceedings that entail filing a civil lawsuit against an accused perpetrator.
Address Liability Issues With Key Parties and Institutions
When survivors of child sex abuse seek justice, they should also explore the legal responsibility of the institutions that enabled their abuser. It could involve claims against public entities such as healthcare providers, schools, or government organizations for failing to provide a safe environment or paying no heed to cases of abuse. Depending on the particulars of a case, survivors should verify if their abuser had a financial relationship with a particular institution or individuals and if they played some role in facilitating the abuse.
Specify Appropriate Monetary Damages
Another crucial step for survivors when filing a lawsuit is understanding the categories of damages they can pursue in court. Plaintiffs may receive reparation for physical, psychological, and emotional harm resulting from their experience with abuse and medical expenses.
Moreover, compensation may also cover punitive damages such as pain and suffering or the survivor’s lifestyle losses due to trauma. Survivors need to accurately calculate the total compensation due so they can present a reliable demand for damages. A sexual abuse injury lawyer will likely assist in providing monetary guidance and ensure the claimant gets a reasonable amount for damages.
Build a Solid Legal Argument
The strength and success of any sexual abuse case depend on the quality and integrity of legal proceedings undertaken by the victim’s attorney. To attain this, attorneys must have an accurate understanding of the facts and a robust record of evidence to prove that the abuser is legally liable. Expert witnesses and other relevant testimonies might prove pivotal in forming adequate legal remedies for survivors, and accounts from specific events must match so the defendant cannot deny liability.
Child sexual abuse carries devastating physical, emotional, and psychological consequences that can haunt victims for life. The passage of Maryland’s Child Victims Act of 2023 follows a growing national debate on creating meaningful legislation to claim damages and offer reparations to survivors of decades-old sexual abuse incidents.
As family members attempt to take legal action against wrongdoers, they must explore litigation strategies and contact a personal injury attorney to ensure the abuser can be entirely held accountable for their actions.