Sexual Abuse Lawyers in Pittsburgh Supporting Our Clients Every Step of the Way
Sexual abuse is a devastating experience that can have long-lasting psychological, emotional, and physical effects on survivors. Victims of sexual abuse often feel a mix of emotions, including shock, disbelief, betrayal, and shame. They may also struggle with depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Feelings of guilt or responsibility for the abusive behavior can compound the trauma of being sexually abused. Survivors may blame themselves for not recognizing the signs or speaking out sooner. This self-blame can lead to feelings of inadequacy and difficulty trusting future relationships. Survivors may also find it difficult to fully express their emotions while simultaneously trying to make sense of what happened to them.
Victims of sexual abuse face unique challenges in their path to recovery. They must cope with the effects of trauma and navigate legal proceedings that may involve testifying against their abuser in court. The fear and distress survivors face as they relive their traumatic experiences during the justice system process can be overwhelming and intimidating.
At Andreozzi & Foote, we understand how difficult it is for victims of sexual abuse to pursue legal action against an attacker or negligent party responsible for allowing abuse to occur unchecked. We strive to provide professional legal representation with sensitivity towards your experience while helping you seek justice through civil proceedings, regardless if there was an outcome through criminal proceedings or not. Our team will work together at every stage while pursuing your case, including building evidence, filing paperwork, and representing you in court when necessary, all while providing sound advice throughout the process so you are fully informed as far as any potential risks associated with litigation as well as any available remedies available under civil law that might be applicable in your case.
What is Sexual Abuse?
Sexual abuse is any form of unwanted sexual contact or attention. This includes, but is not limited to, rape and other forms of sexual assault, sexual exploitation and grooming, and other forms of exploitation. It can occur between adults and children and may happen at home, in the workplace, or even in public places.
The most common perpetrators of sexual abuse are people with power over the victim—like parents, teachers, or coaches—or those the victims trust—like family members or friends. Sexual abuse can also occur when an abuser manipulates a vulnerable person into situations where they feel unable to give consent.
Sexual abuse does not always leave physical evidence; it often leaves psychological trauma that can cause long-term emotional damage. Common signs include depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, suicidal thoughts, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Victims of sexual abuse may also suffer from physical health problems such as chronic pain and fatigue due to the trauma they experienced.
Survivors need to be aware that lawyers can represent them if they decide to pursue civil action against an abuser. Survivors should seek legal representation early on so that they can make informed decisions about pursuing a case while still accessing necessary healing resources throughout the process. Furthermore, talking with a lawyer allows survivors to explore all aspects of taking legal action, including how much support may be available from state or federal compensation programs for victims of crime. Let us help you get the justice you rightfully deserve.
What are Common Signs of Sexual Abuse?
Sexual abuse is a disturbing and often traumatic experience for victims. While every case of sexual abuse is different, some common signs may indicate that someone has been the victim of such an attack. Victims can experience physical, psychological, and emotional symptoms due to their ordeal.
Physical signs of sexual abuse include unexplained bruises or scratches, sexually transmitted diseases, pregnancy, or bleeding from the genital area. In addition to these physical signs, psychological and emotional distress are common in people who have experienced sexual assault or other forms of abuse. Symptoms such as depression, anxiety, sleep disturbances, flashbacks, and nightmares can all be indicators that someone has suffered some form of sexual violence.
Victims may also exhibit behavior changes, which could indicate that something has happened. Such changes may include becoming withdrawn, avoiding certain people or places, or displaying a decrease in self-esteem and confidence.
Ultimately, it’s vital for victims of sexual abuse to know that they are not alone and that professional legal representation can help them find closure and regain control over their lives. With the right legal team on your side, you will have the peace of mind you deserve.
What Evidence is Needed for a Sexual Abuse Case?
When a lawyer represents a victim of sexual abuse in a civil case, they must prove that the perpetrator is legally responsible for damages caused by their behavior. The evidence needed to build a successful case can vary from situation to situation but generally includes medical records, police reports, and witness testimony.
Medical records are essential for victims of sexual abuse because they provide tangible proof of an injury or other trauma experienced as the result of the assault. When doctors document physical injuries related to the assault, it creates an indisputable level of evidence that can be used in court proceedings. Similarly, psychological evaluations obtained following an incident offer evidence regarding any emotional distress suffered due to the incident.
Police reports are also critical when pursuing civil action against a perpetrator of sexual abuse. These reports provide an objective account of what happened and offer additional evidence to support a victim’s claim. Police reports also help lawyers prove that the accused perpetrator knew about the incident and would be legally liable for damages caused by their actions.
Finally, witness testimony is invaluable when pursuing a case against a perpetrator of sexual abuse in civil court. Witnesses who observed or experienced the abuse can provide first-hand accounts that are incredibly helpful when building a solid legal case against an abuser.
By collecting this type of evidence during their investigation, our lawyers are better able to build strong cases and maximize potential compensation for our clients.
How Can an Experienced Sexual Abuse Lawyer Help?
Though it is not always possible to seek justice through criminal proceedings, especially if an abuser has died or is no longer living in the same jurisdiction, survivors still have options for seeking civil justice through sexual abuse lawyers like Andreozzi & Foote in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Civil law allows victims to pursue financial compensation from perpetrators or organizations responsible for the negligence that contributed to the abuse occurring or continuing unchecked. This type of lawsuit serves both practical financial needs resulting from medical care and other expenses associated with recovery. Perhaps more importantly, it provides a sense of closure for many victims who previously felt powerless over their situation due to a lack of criminal accountability. Call us at 866-311-8640 to learn more about how we can help.