Civil Litigation Resulting from Sexual Assault or Sexual Harassment
Due to the #Metoo movement, sexual assault and sexual harassment have been getting more coverage in the news over the last year. The greater awareness and understanding of these serious situations can only be beneficial to society as a whole as we work to change behavior and be more accepting of the experiences of others. Perhaps you’ve been the victim of sexual assault or sexual harassment and you are wondering what you can do to get help and if a civil tort claim would apply in your case.
As a victim of sexual assault or sexual harassment, the first option is to get help for the trauma you’ve experienced. This can be through seeing a doctor or therapist, or speaking to a trusted friend or family member. You may find healing and not wish to pursue the issue any further to avoid having to dredge up the horrible experience and relive the pain. Another option is to contact law enforcement if you believe a crime has been committed against you. The detective will take all of the information and determine whether there is enough evidence to press charges against the offender. Finally, there is the option to pursue a civil tort claim for sexual assault or sexual harassment. The last two options of contacting law enforcement or pursuing a civil tort claim may be hard in that they will cause you to have to relive the sexual assault or sexual harassment, but they are necessary to ensure justice is done.
Since you do not need to have an attorney to contact law enforcement regarding your sexual assault or sexual harassment, we will focus on discussing the option of pursuing a civil tort claim. Civil tort claims for sexual assault and sexual harassment can be difficult to pursue which makes it even more important for you to contact an experienced attorney. The first reason these types of claims are difficult is because it is often a “he said-she said” situation, which makes it difficult to meet the burden of proof to show that this assault or harassment occurred. That is why early reporting to family and friends, law enforcement, or your doctor or therapist, can be beneficial. If you get in touch with an attorney early enough, we can contact potential witnesses and gather information to help prove that the sexual assault or sexual harassment occurred.
Another reason why sexual assault and sexual harassment claims can be difficult is that there may not be any money to recover even if a jury finds that you were the victim of sexual assault or sexual harassment. Most insurance policies do not cover an individual for his or her intentional acts, and will not cover anyone who sexually assaults or sexually harasses another individual. Since insurance is usually not applicable, personal assets and money may be the only way to recover from an offender, and they may not have any assets or money to get.
By contacting an experienced law firm like The Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC, we can investigate your case, and work together with law enforcement if applicable, in order to determine whether there are any other claims which may make insurance coverage applicable, or whether the offending individual has assets that could pay a judgment should a jury find in your favor. Contact the Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC today for your free consultation* and find out if we can help you get the justice you deserve.