Hartford Attorneys for Sexual Assault Victims
Compassionate Representation & Support
A sexual assault or period of sexual abuse can have long-term physical, emotional, and psychological effects. According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, about one in five women and one in 71 men will experience rape in his or her lifetime. In 80% of reported rape cases, the victim knew the perpetrator of the violence.
If you were recently the victim of a sexual assault or abuse, you have legal options and you do not have to face this alone. The Hartford personal injury attorneys at Goff Law Group can stand by your side and help you pursue justice.
We invite you to discuss your case with our compassionate attorneys. Call (203) 408-1213 now.
What Is Sexual Violence?
Acts of sexual abuse and misconduct are violent crimes under the criminal laws of Connecticut. A person who commits acts of sexual violence often faces criminal charges, but victims may also bring a civil claim against the defendant for damages.
A victim of sexual violence may collect damages for economic and non-economic harms that result from many different types of acts, including:
- Rape: This type of sexual assault involves penetration without consent. It may involve physical force but this is not a prerequisite for rape charges. A person may also commit rape if he or she commits penetration on any orifice when the other person is unable to mentally or physically consent.
- Sexual assault: This is an umbrella term that describes many different types of unwanted sexual conduct, from coercion and rape to sexual battery and harassment. Any unwanted sexual behavior, whether physical, spoken, or emotional, may be a form of sexual assault.
- Sexual harassment: The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) defines sexual harassment as any unwelcome sexual activity, such as advances and verbal or physical acts that intimidate a person or affect his or her work or learning environment. Catcalling, groping, stalking, and requesting sexual favors are all types of sexual harassment. This kind of behavior represents a pattern of harassment, attention, or unwanted advances of a sexual nature that makes the victim fearful for his or her safety.
Options for Legal Recourse Following Sexual Assault or Abuse
The first legal form of recourse for many victims of sexual assault is the criminal justice system. Under Connecticut’s sexual violence laws, a person who is a victim of sexual violence may request that a prosecutor’s office pursue criminal charges against the person who committed the act. Sexual assault crimes may be felony or misdemeanor charges under Connecticut law, depending on the nature of the crime and the defendant’s previous criminal history.
What most sexual assault victims don’t realize, however, is that another form of legal recourse exists in the form of a civil claim. The civil justice system works to provide victims of both negligence and intentional conduct recourse in the form of financial compensation. Victims of sexual assault on college campuses, for example, may pursue a claim against the university where it occurred on the basis of negligent security.
Many legal theories may come into play when pursuing a civil claim for sexual abuse or assault. However, the end goal of all these cases is the same: To provide victims with a form of financial recourse that goes beyond the criminal justice system.
A sexual assault victim may receive compensation for:
- Medical care
- Any treatment for psychiatric conditions that result from the trauma
- Emotional distress
- Pain and suffering
Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Call (203) 408-1213.