Attorney for Sexual Abuse Victims of Fr. Hugo Bedoya in Brooklyn

No person should have to endure sexual abuse at the hands of a person that was supposed to look out for their best interests. Unfortunately, this is exactly what happens to many children they were left in the care of priests and clergy members that worked for the Diocese of Brooklyn. If you or a family member was abused by a priest employed by the Diocese of Brooklyn, consult with an experienced Brooklyn sexual abuse attorney today.

The legal team at Sullivan & Galleshaw, LLP are determined to help survivors of sexual abuse hold their abusers accountable for their injuries. Our firm understands how much strength it takes to come forward to tell your story of sexual abuse, and we are here for you. To schedule a free legal consultation to discuss your potential case, contact Sullivan & Galleshaw, LLP at (718) 593-4056, or contact us online.

New York Child Victims Act

Children that are abused by adults often have a difficult time expressing that they were victims of sexual abuse. The child may feel like that no one would believe their story or that they were the cause of the sexual abuse. In some cases, the child may feel that what they endured was not sexual abuse at all. Fortunately, there has been a push in New York and nationwide for victims of sexual abuse to come forward and face their abusers.

The New York Child Victims Act (CVA) was passed on February 14, 2019, and it was designed to increase the statute of limitations for victims of sexual abuse who wish to file a lawsuit. The statute of limitations determines the amount of time that a plaintiff has to pursue a particular type of case in court. After the CVA was passed, victims of sexual abuse were given to the age of 55 to file a civil lawsuit against their abuser.

If a lawsuit were not filed against an abuser within the timeframe permitted by the statute of limitations, the court would bar the plaintiff’s claim, and they would have no opportunity to pursue compensation.

Additionally, if the statute of limitations on a plaintiff’s case had already elapsed before the CVA was passed, the plaintiff would be given one year after the law takes effect to file their case. The one-year period does not begin to run until six months after the CVA was passed; this means plaintiffs that want to meet this one-year deadline will be able to take action on August 14, 2019.

The statute of limitations is a law designed to ensure that a plaintiff pursues their legal claim with some urgency. It is also intended to protect the defendant so that they are not concerned about a case against them that may never be filled. However, the State of New York recognized the widespread incidences of abuse from members of the church and others that called for a change to the law. As many victims have difficulties coming forward against their abuser, the CVA allows victims an ample amount of time to determine whether they want to face their abuser in court.

It is also important to note that a plaintiff can not only file a claim against a member of the church that abused but also the institution that employed. This is referred to as vicarious liability, and it becomes a factor when an employee commits an illicit action during the course of their employment. For example, if a priest abuses a child while they are working for the church, this action may also implicate the diocese they work for.

To learn more about the types of sexual abuse that may apply to your case, continue reading and speak with an experienced New York sexual assault lawyer.

Types of Sexual Abuse

There are multiple forms of sexual abuse that a person could be subjected to. Many times, a victim of sexual abuse will question whether their ordeal was truly sexual abuse. This can occur when a child places a great deal of trust in a person that they view as an authority figure.

Sexual abusers may use various schemes to try to keep a victim quiet about the abuse. For example, they may threaten to tell the victim’s family or claim the abuse was the fault of the victim. That is why it is important to understand your rights when it comes to filing a lawsuit for sexual abuse. The following is a list of actions that can be interpreted as sexual abuse:

  • Making sexually explicit comments about another person or their body
  • Exposing a child to pornographic material
  • Creating sexually explicit material with a child
  • Inappropriately touching a child
  • Rape

Contact Our Brooklyn Sexual Assault Lawyer To Speak About Your Potential Claim

If you or a family member was a victim of sexual abuse, contact an experienced Brooklyn sexual assault lawyer today. With over 30 years of combined legal experience litigating a wide range of personal injury cases, the legal team at Sullivan & Galleshaw, LLP is prepared to fight for you. To schedule a free case evaluation, contact Sullivan & Galleshaw, LLP at (718) 593-4056.

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