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Child Sexual Abuse Attorney


Compassionate Child Sexual Abuse Attorneys Advocating for the Rights of Child Sexual Assault Survivors for Over 25 Years.

Unfortunately, child sexual abuse in the United States is an epidemic. Try watching the news to find a day without a story of a child being sexually assaulted or abused. Whether the abuse occurs at the hands of a family member, teacher, mentor, or any other trusted person in the child’s life, the effects will scar that child for life.

These children eventually become adults ready to seek justice against their abusers. They often find it difficult to trust anyone. They need a legal team that cares about them and knows the law. They need a team that will advocate for everything their abusers took away.

Over the past year, many states have passed laws that extend the time limit or statute of limitations for child sexual abuse victims. The extension allows victims to begin the healing process before facing their abuser in court.

We understand that this process is not like any other case. You were violated in the worst way. You have worked through the pain to get you to the point where you are ready to face your abuser. Now, let our former sex-crimes prosecutors help you fight for the justice you deserve.

What Is Child Sexual Abuse?

Child sexual abuse is defined as any form of sexual activity or behavior involving a child, carried out by an adult, older adolescent, or another child. This includes behaviors like fondling, penetration, exposure to pornography, sexual exploitation, and online grooming. Child sexual abuse can occur in various settings, such as within families, schools, communities, and institutions like religious organizations or sports clubs. It represents a profound violation of a child’s rights and can result in devastating and enduring consequences for their physical, emotional, and psychological well-being. Recognizing the signs of child sexual abuse and taking prompt action to prevent and address it are crucial for safeguarding children and facilitating their safety and recovery.

Here are a few additional examples of child sexual abuse include, but are not limited to:

  • Fondling or inappropriate touching of a child’s body
  • Penetration, including vaginal, anal, or oral sex with a child
  • Exposing a child to pornographic material or sexually explicit content
  • Sexual exploitation, such as forcing a child into prostitution or pornography
  • Online grooming, where an adult befriends a child online with the intent of engaging in sexual activity
  • Coerced or forced sexual acts between children of different ages, where consent cannot be given due to age or power dynamics
  • Sexual harassment, which can involve inappropriate comments, gestures, or advances of a sexual nature towards a child.
  • Non-contact sexual abuse, such as voyeurism (watching a child undress or use the bathroom) or exposure (indecent exposure to a child).
  • Exploitation through sexting, where a child is coerced or manipulated into sending sexually explicit images or messages.
  • Sexual abuse within institutional settings, including schools, churches, youth organizations, or foster care systems, where individuals in positions of authority exploit their power to abuse children.
    • Incest: When someone in the family, like a parent, sibling, or relative, does something bad to a child, like touching them in a bad way. It can make the child feel very sad and confused.
    • Exchanging sexually explicit images, photos, or conversations with a child through email, social media, or text messages
    • Rape
    • Stalking
    • Touching a child’s genitals, breasts, or other intimate areas
    • Sexting with a child
    • Cyberstalking

These examples provide a more comprehensive understanding of the different forms child sexual abuse can take.

Can Child Sexual Abuse Occur Online?

In today’s technology-driven world, child sexual abuse can occur without ever meeting face-to-face. Many children become victims of child trafficking through social media and other online resources. Abusers groom the children they meet online by befriending them.

Often, the children think they are speaking with another child or a young adult they can trust. These adults eventually convince the kids to meet them. Then, these adults abduct the children into a life of sex trafficking or sexual abuse.

Other ways child sexual abuse can occur as online sexual harassment or abuse may include the following:

  • Sexual Bullying
  • Cyberstalking
  • Sexting
  • Sharing sexual videos, images, and websites with a child

Who Are the Victims of Child Sexual Abuse?

The statistics regarding child sexual abuse are appalling. As reported by the Crimes Against Children Research Center, the reality shows that 1 in 5 girls and 1 in 20 boys are sexually abused as children. Further statistics show that 16% of children ages 14 to 17 are sexually assaulted every year. The most vulnerable ages, according to these statistics, are children age 7 through 13.

Identifying Perpetrators: Who Commits Child Sexual Abuse?

When someone you or your loved one trusts violates that trust by committing child sexual abuse, it can be devastating. These perpetrators often hold positions of authority or are close family members, making the betrayal even more profound. It’s crucial to recognize that you are not alone in this situation, and there is support available to help you navigate this challenging time.

Common perpetrators of child sexual abuse include clergy, teachers, peers or another child, babysitters, coaches, and even family members. These individuals exploit their position of trust to manipulate and groom their victims, leaving lasting emotional scars.

As a victim or a loved one of a victim, it’s essential to know that you have rights. You deserve justice and compensation for the harm caused by the abuser’s actions. Seeking legal assistance from professionals who specialize in child sexual abuse cases, such as the compassionate lawyers at the Derek Smith Law Group, can help you understand your options and advocate for your rights.

Remember, healing is possible, and you don’t have to face this journey alone. There are resources and support networks available to help you through this challenging time.

Some of the most common child sexual abusers may be:

  • Clergy
  • Priests
  • Teachers
  • Babysitters
  • Caretakers
  • Scout leaders
  • Coaches
  • Family members (aunt, uncle, mother, father, cousin, brother, sister, grandparent, etc.)
  • Family friends
  • Daycare providers
  • Healthcare providers (doctors, nurses, dentists, therapists, etc.)
  • Society influencers (celebrities, business leaders, government officials, etc.)

Child sex abusers use their status as a trusted members of your inner circle or society to groom children. They gain their trust and take advantage of the relationship they create. As a result, victims become adults who do not trust others.

As a victim or survivor of child sexual abuse, you have the right to get justice. You deserve compensation for the life you lost because of your abuser’s actions. You have the right to heal and have them foot the bill. The child sexual abuse lawyers at the Derek Smith Law Group want to help you advocate for your rights that these monsters took away.

What Are the Rights of Victims of Child Sexual Abuse?

Until recently, victims of child sexual abuse had an extremely limited statute of limitations to file a lawsuit or criminal action. The statute of limitations has been changing across the country.

New York City was the first municipality to change the law. Other states and municipalities are quickly following suit.

Statistics show that many victims of child sexual abuse do not even come forward until the age of 52. Therefore, many laws now allow civil lawsuits against abusers to get filed until the victim reaches age 55.

If the victim wished to file a separate criminal action, New York City’s time limit is five years after the victim’s 23 birthday. Each state has its own laws regarding the statute of limitations.

Some key points to remember include:

  • You do not have to file or win a criminal case to file and/or win a civil case.
  • In criminal court, you are a witness and may get restitution.
  • The key result in a criminal case is to put the criminal in jail or provide an acceptable punishment.
  • In civil court, you are a party to the case. You are looking for compensation and justice.

The child sex abuse lawyers at the Derek Smith Law Group can help you file your child sexual abuse complaint in civil court. We will stand with you as your advocate. We will help you stand up against your abuser and fight for your rights from the moment you enter our office until the courts enter the final judgment.

Contact Our Experienced Team of Former Sex-Crimes Prosecutors for Your Free Consultation

You have a right to make your abuser face justice. You have a right to get help in paying your medical expenses as well as compensation for the horrors you endured. While no amount of money will erase what occurred, getting justice can help the healing process.

As the victim of child sexual abuse, the experienced team of former sex-crimes prosecutors at the Derek Smith Law Group in New York City, Philadelphia, Miami, New Jersey, and Los Angeles can help. Contact us today at (800) 807-2209 for your free consultation. We will never take a dime until we help you win your case.     

Were you a victim of child sexual abuse? Do you have questions about your legal rights? We want to help you get answers. Call us at 800.807.2209 with your questions.

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