Sexual Abuse in Religious Institutions Lawyers in Maryland — Helping Our Clients Hold Abusers and Enablers Accountable
Sexual abuse in religious organizations is a pervasive and troubling issue that has gained increased public attention in recent years. Many faith communities strive to create safe environments, but abuse still occurs. Sometimes, this is because it’s enabled within the organization. If you or a loved one has experienced this, a sexual abuse in religious institutions lawyer in Maryland can assist you in seeking justice.
At Andreozzi + Foote, our experienced legal team understands what you’re going through. This type of abuse can be particularly devastating for survivors, as it often involves a betrayal of trust and a violation of deeply-held beliefs. Fortunately, it is possible to seek justice against those who committed these acts and those who permitted it to occur — even decades after the fact. Contact our Maryland religious sexual abuse attorneys for a free consultation today.
Who Is Accountable for Abuse in Religious Institutions?
In cases of sexual abuse in religious institutions, there may be multiple parties who are legally accountable, depending on the specific circumstances of the abuse. The abuser is primarily responsible for the abuse, and may face criminal charges for their actions. However, there may be other parties who are also held accountable, such as the religious institution itself, its leaders, and any individuals who knew about the abuse or failed to take appropriate preventative action.
In some cases, the religious institution may be held vicariously liable for the actions of its employees — such as priests or ministers — who commit sexual abuse while acting within the scope of their employment. Additionally, the institution may be held directly liable if it was aware of the abuse and failed to take adequate steps to prevent it or protect victims. Put simply, there are various parties who may share blame in these cases.
Our sexual abuse in religious institutions lawyers in Maryland can help you tackle these tough issues.
What Should You Do if You’ve Suffered Religious Sexual Abuse?
If you or a loved one have suffered religious institution sexual abuse, you may be confused about how to move forward. Our law firm can help you better understand your options and the resources available to you. However, your first steps should be to report the abuse to authorities and seek the help of a legal professional. This will get the ball rolling on truly holding abusers to account for their actions.
Of course, it’s possible that significant time has passed since your abuse. It’s unfortunate, but only 12% of child sex abuse is reported to authorities. Additionally, over half of those mandated to report abuse don’t do so. Combined with the fact that a significant percentage of religious observers believe sexual abuse occurs more frequently than known, and it becomes clear that many instances of abuse are not immediately reported.
Fortunately, Maryland recently passed a law removing the statute of limitations for sex abuse. So if you or a loved one were victimized, let our sexual abuse in religious institutions lawyers in Maryland assist. Contact us today.
What Damages Are Available in Religious Abuse Cases?
There are various types of monetary damages a victim of religious sexual abuse may be entitled to. Economic damages are fairly common. These are awarded in order to compensate a victim for real financial loss. This can include lost income at work, medical bills, ongoing therapy costs, and more. On the other hand, non-economic damages are meant to compensate victims for non-financial losses — such as pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment in life.
Punitive damages are also frequently available when particularly egregious actions occur. They are meant to punish defendants rather than reimburse someone for losses. However, non-economic damages may be the main avenue of compensation in cases of religious sexual abuse. That’s because private institutions can face up to $1.5 million in non-economic damages in these cases.
Let our Maryland sexual abuse in religious institutions attorneys fight for the justice you deserve.
Contact Our Sexual Abuse in Religious Institutions Lawyers in Maryland
Sexual abuse is always a traumatizing experience. However, this trauma is often deepened when abuse occurs within a religious organization, by trusted spiritual leaders, or when an institution enables such abuse. Moving forward after such an experience is often a journey fraught with hurdles, but you don’t have to go through this alone. An experienced attorney can assist.
At Andreozzi + Foote, our team of legal professionals is experienced with taking on religious institutions and the abusers within them. It’s a sad truth, but many people corrupt religion to satisfy their dark desires. We detest that you or a loved one were victimized in such a way, but we’ll work hard to help you secure justice. Let our sexual abuse in religious institutions lawyers in Maryland assist.
Contact us today by calling 866-311-8640 to schedule your confidential and free consultation.