Pittsburgh Institutional Sexual Abuse Lawyers
Pennsylvania Lawyers Represent Victims of Institutional Sexual Abuse and Sexual Assault
If you are a victim of institutional sexual abuse or sexual assault in Pittsburgh, Erie, Greensburg, or anywhere else in Pennsylvania, you need a qualified attorney on your side. To speak with our dedicated Pittsburgh institutional sexual abuse lawyers who have experience in helping the victims of sexual abuse and assault obtain compensation, contact us at Goodrich & Geist, P.C. today.
Unfortunately, the victims of sexual abuse and assault often fail to realize that they may be entitled to compensation through civil litigation. While the perpetrators of institutional sexual abuse and assault may be found criminally liable (and may therefore be exposed to criminal punishment for their wrongdoing), you — as the victim — can also hold them civilly liable for their wrongdoing and recover damages to compensate you for your various losses.
If you have suffered as the victim of sexual abuse and assault in an institutional context (i.e., at work or in school), then you may be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries, pursuant to Pennsylvania law. Contact our Pittsburgh institutional sexual abuse lawyers for more information today.
Erie, PA Sexual Assault: Civil Cases Are Easier to Win Than Criminal Cases
If the criminal case has failed, and the defendant escaped criminal liability, it’s important to note that the defendant can still be held civilly liable for the injuries they caused you. The criminal case is separate from the civil case, and the standards for the two are different. As such, you may still be entitled to recover damages for the losses you suffered as a result of the defendant’s sexual abuse and assault, even if the criminal case is lost.
How does civil litigation work in sexual assault cases?
In criminal law, for the defendant to be held liable for the crimes at issue, the state prosecutors must prove that the defendant committed the crimes beyond a reasonable doubt. The reasonable-doubt standard is roughly indicative of a 99% chance of the criminal defendant having committed the crimes at issue. As such, if the jury feels as though there is even a 2% or 3% chance that the defendant is innocent, they must acquit him or her.
In civil law, the defendant may be held liable for institutional sexual abuse and assault if you can show that it is “more likely than not” that the defendant is responsible for your injuries. This standard is roughly indicative of a 51% chance of the civil defendant being responsible. It is — naturally — much easier to satisfy the civil standard.
Where Institutional Sexual Abuse and Assault Occurs
Institutional sexual abuse and assault can occur in a variety of places where an institution provides a useful shield for the abuser. Common places at which institutional sexual abuse and assault occur include:
- Educational institutions (from primary school to secondary and postsecondary schools)
- Recreational organizations, such as summer camps and sports teams
- Religious organizations
- Volunteer organizations
- Senior centers
- Health institutions (i.e., hospitals, treatment centers, etc.)
Contact Goodrich & Geist to Speak with Our Compassionate Pittsburgh Institutional Sexual Abuse Lawyers Today
Institutional sexual abuse and assault cases are — quite often — difficult to litigate. In an effort to preserve their public image, institutions frequently move to protect the defendant who committed sexual abuse and sexual assault. Additionally, evidence may be difficult to procure when the institution is working against the victim and when witnesses and other victims fail to come forward.
Despite the inherent difficulty of litigating institutional sexual abuse and assault claims, here at Goodrich & Geist, P.C. our Pittsburgh institutional sexual abuse lawyers are dedicated to making a difference in the lives of those who have been victimized by others. We believe that individuals who have suffered injuries in sexual abuse and assault cases deserve compensation for their losses. We work actively to ensure that those who have been victimized by the defendant are able to secure a significant financial award that will cover their damages.
To schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced Pittsburgh institutional sexual abuse lawyers today, call (412) 766-1455 or fill out the online contact form. At Goodrich & Geist, P.C., we look forward to helping you.