If you are a survivor of sexual assault and have questions about filing a lawsuit, you can contact the injury lawyers at Taylor King Law.
We understand the courage it takes to come forward and to tell your story. Our law firm is ready to listen, and we’re prepared to hold your abuser accountable. Our experienced sexual abuse lawyers will handle your lawsuit from start to finish and help you recover the damages you deserve, regardless of criminal charges.
The recovery from a sexual assault is different for each individual. There’s no timetable for healing. There’s no single correct way to handle the aftermath of a sexual assault. Whether you choose to pursue criminal charges, file a civil lawsuit, or report your assault to the police, Taylor King Law can help you explore your legal options.
Sexual Assault Lawyer
No firm is more committed to being on your side during what’s been a difficult time. Whether you’ve been assaulted, sexually harassed, or sexually abused, you deserve to be heard. And you deserve legal representation you can trust.
We understand it requires courage to come forward. We also understand you may have questions or concerns about filing a civil lawsuit. We’re more than ready to listen, and to answer your questions.
What’s the Difference Between a Criminal Lawsuit and Civil Lawsuit for Sexual Assault?
A criminal lawsuit protects others against a future sexual assault from an abuser, whereas a civil lawsuit provides you with financial compensation for your damages.
In a criminal lawsuit, the prosecutor will prove the defendant committed the crime “beyond a reasonable doubt.” If found guilty, the abuser will face criminal charges including a prison sentence, probation, fines, and required registration as a sex offender.
Statute of Limitations for Sexual Assault in Arkansas
Keep in mind there is a statute of limitations in some instances. In Arkansas, the statute of limitations for rape is six years. However, there are exceptions: if the crime was committed against a minor, for example. There is no statute for first-degree sexual assault in Arkansas, but a 3-year statute of limitations for second-degree and third-degree sexual assault. Once again, the statute of limitations does not apply if the victim was a minor.
A civil lawsuit, or personal injury lawsuit, focuses on you and your recovery of damages for sexual abuse. While a criminal lawsuit requires the plaintiff to prove a crime was committed “beyond a reasonable doubt,” a civil lawsuit requires a lower burden of proof. In a civil sexual assault lawsuit, the plaintiff will seek “preponderance of evidence,” meaning it’s more probable than not that the abuser sexually assaulted the victim.
Regardless if your assailant was found guilty of criminal charges or convicted, you can still pursue a civil lawsuit against them to recover compensation.
What are Recoverable Damages in a Civil Lawsuit for Sexual Abuse?
As a survivor of sexual violence, you are entitled to seek damages against your assailant. Our team of Arkansas injury lawyers will discuss whether you’re able to claim any or all of the following damages:
- Medical Treatment for Injuries
- This includes expenses for medical treatment for injuries from the attack and costs related to sexually-transmitted diseases. If an unwanted pregnancy, then associated medical costs are recoverable.
- Mental Health & Psychological Treatment
- Seeking support from a therapist following a case of abuse can help someone deal with their experience. In the immediate aftermath, as well as in the long-term, the cost of therapy is a recoverable damage.
- Mental Anguish
- Your suffering, though incalculable, will be included in your civil lawsuit. Victims of sexual violence are more likely to develop substance abuse, wrestle with self-harm and suicidal thoughts, and develop depression.
- Loss of Wages
- Whether due to injuries or trauma, oftentimes victims of sexual assault will need time away from work.
- Loss of Future Wages or Income Capacity
- In some cases, the trauma of sexual assault may limit your ability to return to work. If you suffered sexual abuse while on the job, you can seek damages for your inability to return to that same organization.
- Loss of Consortium
- If an assault causes a survivor to withdraw from their loved ones or impairs their relationship, they can claim loss of consortium.
- Punitive Damages
- Punitive damages are considered punishment when a defendant’s behavior is especially harmful. In the case of sexual abuse, punitive damages will be sought.
Third-Party Liability in a Sexual Assault Case
While an attorney will pursue damages against the assailant, in many instances, a third party is also liable. A negligent third party may include an enabler, an organization, a building supervisor, figures of authority, or anyone who could have prevented the assault.
For instance, if a nursing home fails to properly train or monitor their staff and an assault takes place under its care, the nursing home is liable.
A student or child who has suffered sexual abuse by a teacher or coach can hold the school district, leadership, and hiring staff liable.
If a patient suffers sexual abuse by his or her doctor while under examination, the clinic or hospital is liable for damages.
In the case of sexual assault while on a hotel’s property, the resort or hotel may be liable due to inadequate security to prevent the assault.
An experienced attorney will ask the right questions, and passionately pursue every avenue of justice. Ask an injury lawyer if third-party liability is likely in your case.
Arkansas Injury Lawyers On Your Side – By Your Side
To discuss the steps involved in filing a sexual abuse lawsuit, call or schedule a meeting with Taylor King Law.
A consultation with an attorney is 100% free, and it’s confidential:
We’re available to speak over the phone or to schedule a virtual meeting online. However you prefer to discuss your experience, we’re prepared to listen.
It’s been our promise to be on the side of our friends and neighbors in Arkansas for 30 years. With more than 275 years of combined experience, our team is proud to represent your legal needs.
If you’ve been the victim of sexual abuse, we have the experience and the understanding to ensure you receive the justice you deserve. You can call or visit any of our seven locations across Arkansas and into Texas. An initial consultation with an attorney is both free and confidential. We’ll answer all your questions, and because we work on a contingency basis, you won’t owe us anything until we settle your case.
Call us at 870.246.0505 or fill out the form below and one of our team will reach out to you.
Protecting Your Personal Injury Rights
You can speak with an attorney face-to-face at any of our 7 offices across Arkansas. Schedule a confidential meeting with a sexual abuse attorney at any of our office locations in Arkadelphia, Little Rock, Springdale, Fort Smith, Jonesboro, Conway, or Texarkana:
How to Report Sexual Assault?
You have options for reporting a sexual assault. You can choose to call 911, contact your local law enforcement, visit a medical health facility, or call a sexual abuse hotline or care facility.
In the case of an emergency or if you are in immediate danger, dial 911. If you’re unsure who to contact, then calling 911 will ensure you’re directed to the proper authorities.
Contact Local Police Department
You can call or visit your local police department to report sexual abuse. If you are a college student, you can call or stop by campus police.
Visit a Medical Facility
Tell your doctor that you’d like to report a crime. A medical professional can help you with reporting sexual abuse.
Dial a Sexual Abuse Hotline
Many college campuses have sexual assault hotlines available. Dial 1.800.656.4673 for the National Sexual Assault Hotline.
Contact a Care Facility
There are several centers in Arkansas available to help victims of sexual assault. Locations and contact information of care facilities in Arkansas can be found here: Arkansas Centers for Sexual Abuse