Learning that your minor child had to experience such a traumatizing event can be a distressful and heartbreaking experience. Naturally, you may want to seek compensation and justice for your child’s suffering. Filing a civil suit could help you receive monetary compensation from the abuser and hold others accountable.
Why file a civil suit?
Experiencing sexual abuse as a child can have a negative impact on the child’s emotional and behavioral development. There is evidence linking childhood sexual abuse to an increase in depression and other mental health issues. Unfortunately, the pain and trauma can last a lifetime.
Filing a civil lawsuit would allow you to sue the perpetrator for emotional and physical harm and recover damages. Money cannot fix everything, but it can help a child get the treatment they need to start feeling like themselves again. It can also pay for the medical care required to treat any injuries they might have incurred.
Holding other parties liable for the abuse
Even if filing a civil lawsuit is successful, the perpetrator may not have the means to pay for the damages. Without money, the only way they might be able to compensate you is through their personal assets. However, if other parties contributed to the problem, the court may also hold them responsible and require them to cover the costs of damages.
Certain institutions are expected to provide a safe environment for children. When they do not do what is necessary to keep children safe, victims may file a civil lawsuit against them. Institutions like schools and churches can be held liable for negligence or failure to protect a child if such a crime occurred on their premises and they did nothing to stop it.
It goes without saying that choosing to proceed with a civil case involves serious thought. Not everyone is willing to revisit the traumatic events for police enforcement, lawyers and the court. If you want to know more about what to expect from a civil lawsuit for your child’s sexual abuse case, you may talk to a lawyer.