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Elgin Sexual Abuse Lawyer

A sex crime can have lifelong effects on the victim. It may be hard to prove because it is often done in secret, but you do not need to suffer alone.

The Law Firm of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC, has experience representing victims of sexual abuse in nursing homes and other care facilities. Call us at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone number) or use the contact form today for immediate legal advice and schedule a free consultation!

Our Elgin personal injury law firm works on contingency fees, meaning no upfront fees are required from you unless we win compensation for you through litigation or settlement negotiations. So, to get started, call us today!

Sexual assault is a criminal act that can occur in any relationship, whether between two strangers or between two people in a relationship.

It occurs when one person forces another to participate in any sexual activity that they do not consent to, typically using violence and threats.

Sexual assault can lead to rape or other forms of sexual abuse, but it does not always have to. The perpetrator can be guilty of sexual assault even if they never touch their victim.

The Devastation of Sexual Assault

According to RAINN, every 98 seconds, an American is sexually assaulted. That adds up to about 293,000 victims per year. Unfortunately, the numbers may be even higher because many sexual assaults go unreported yearly.

The effects of child sexual abuse can last a lifetime. Even if the physical wounds have healed, the emotional trauma can cause problems long after the incident. Survivors of sexual abuse can suffer from low self-esteem, depression, and intimacy issues that lead to future problems in marriage or other romantic relationships.

Sexual abuse does not just affect adults; it also affects children. According to the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, about one out of six boys are sexually abused before 18. It can have a devastating effect on the child's development and future relationships.

What Can You Do If You Have Been Sexually Assaulted?

If you have been sexually assaulted, it is important to get help as soon as possible. The first step is to go to the nearest hospital or call the police. You can also call a rape crisis hotline in your area.

According to RAINN, the sexually assaulted should not change clothes, bathe, shower, drink alcohol, or go to the bathroom before emergency personnel arrives. In addition, if you have a rape kit performed within 120 hours of the assault, it may give police more DNA evidence against your attacker.

Survivors of sex abuse should also seek help from a therapist or counselor specializing in helping victims of sexual assault. This person can help you work through the trauma and emotions you are experiencing.

Different Forms of Sexual Assault

According to the U.S Census Bureau, in the United States, someone is sexually assaulted every 107 seconds. According to RAINN, one in six women will be raped or sexually assaulted during their lifetime.

In many personal injury cases, a perpetrator of sexual abuse will use physical force against its victim to gain compliance.

Other forms of sexual assault come from coercion and threats. When you are coerced into having sex or performing other sexual acts, you may not consent to the act.

According to RAINN, rape is an act in which someone has sexual intercourse without the victim's consent. It can also involve oral penetration, anal penetration, digital penetration, and vaginal penetration with a foreign object.

Some forms of sexual assault involve touching the victim's genitals or other body parts for sexual pleasure.

Different Types of Sexual Assault

According to RAINN, many sex crimes range from groping and flashing to penetration with an object. More serious types of sexual abuse include:

  • Kidnapping: Kidnapping is a form of forcible confinement or imprisonment. If you are kidnapped and raped, this is considered rape and kidnapping. If the kidnapper also physically assaults you after being imprisoned, it can be charged as sexual abuse and physical assault.
  • Forcible Fondling: Forcible fondling happens when someone touches another person's private parts for their sexual gratification without that person's consent.
  • Rape: Rape is forced sexual intercourse. A victim of rape can be either female or male and doesn't need to involve penetration of the vagina with a body part or an object.
  • Sexual Assault With An Object: Sexual assault with an object happens when someone uses an object or instrument to penetrate another person's vagina, anus, or mouth without their consent. It can include using a finger, penis, bottle, or another object.
  • Incest: Incest happens when someone forces another person to have sexual intercourse with them or one of their close relatives by using fear or intimidation.
  • Statutory Rape: Statutory rape is sexual intercourse with someone below the age of consent. In most states, the age of consent is 18 years old, but it can be as low as 16 and as high as 21.

Some states allow for "Romeo and Juliet" laws, which provide exceptions to statutory rape if both partners are close in age and the age difference is only a few years.

For example, if the victim is 16 or 17 years old, it would be legal to have sexual intercourse with someone 19 or 20 years old. However, in states without Romeo and Juliet laws, a person with sex with a minor cannot use this to defend against statutory rape.

Sexual Abuse in Nursing Homes

Many sexual abuse victims are traumatized by inappropriate touching, sexual contact, and abuse while residing in a nursing home. Many elder abuse cases go unreported, with the predators never held accountable in criminal court. Him

Nearly every sexual abuse case reported resulted in a civil lawsuit that holds the sexual offender accountable for monetary compensation. These personal injury cases are filed by abused nursing home residents or family members of the sexually assaulted.

Nursing home sexual abuse is a widespread issue that continues to gain more attention. If you consider placing your loved one in a nursing home, ensure the facility has adequate staffing to protect vulnerable residents from sexual abuse.

If you or someone you love was sexually abused while residing in an assisted living facility, contact an Elgin sexual abuse lawyer today. Our law firm has experienced attorneys resolving sexual abuse cases who will work hard to get you the compensation you deserve.

Sexual Abuse And Religious Organizations

Many religious organizations, especially the Catholic Church, finally began responding to the backlash of sex abuse cases hidden from public view for decades.

Many religious, sexual predators are given a slap on the wrist with little to no consequences for their actions. For example, in some Elgin sexual abuse cases, the leaders of the religious organizations are protected by the Church and are never held accountable.

Often, church officials knew about the sexual abuser and failed to protect the person sexually abused for years. As a result, in nearly every civil claim, the sexual violence victim was a minor child or a vulnerable young adult.

There are no circumstances where a sexual abuser has the legal right to interact with children or adults sexually inappropriately.

Were you sexually assaulted by a religious leader, layperson, coach, teacher, or another member of an organization?

If so, you might be entitled to receive compensation from the organization or Church, even if the incident occurred decades ago.

Statute of Limitations

The statute of limitations is the amount of time a prosecutor has to file criminal charges against a suspect. This time limit varies by state, typically around 5 to 10 years.

Once the statute of limitations expires, the prosecutor can no longer file charges against the suspect. It means that if you do not report your sexual abuse right away, the perpetrator may avoid prosecution.

The Different States, Different Statute Of Limitations

Some states have statutes of limitations that are longer than others for these crimes. For example, in California, the statute of limitations for rape is ten years.

In Connecticut, Alabama, Louisiana, and Florida, it's 20 years. Rhode Island has no statute of limitations for felony sexual assault.

  • Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Indiana, and Iowa have a statute of limitations of 7 years
  • Michigan and Nevada have a statute of limitations of 4 years
  • Minnesota has a statute of limitations of 3 years
  • Oklahoma has a statute of limitations of 2 years
  • Illinois has a statute of limitations of 3 years
  • South Carolina has no statute of limitations for criminal sexual conduct with a minor under 16

Wisconsin has a statute of limitations for sexual abuse that begins when the crime is reported.

It means that if you report your sex assault within the first 12 months, the prosecutor can file charges against your perpetrator; if you report it more than 12 months after the crime occurred, the prosecutor may not be able to file charges.

Sexual Assault vs. Sexual Abuse

Although these crimes are often used interchangeably, there is a difference between sexual assault and abuse.

Sexual abuse occurs when someone is forced to participate in any sexual activity that they don't consent to do. It can be forcing the victim to engage in sex acts, fondling their private parts, exposing themselves indecently, or even making them watch sexual activities.

Sexual assault, on the other hand, is when someone is forced to have sexual intercourse against their will.

Sexual abuse can lead to sexual assault, but it's not always a prerequisite. Someone can be sexually assaulted without being sexually abused first, and vice versa.

The Aftermath of Sexual Abuse

Many victims of sexual violence suffer for decades from their abuse's emotional and psychological trauma. However, there are ways to seek help and begin the healing process.

If you have been sexually assaulted or abused, it is important to remember that you are not alone. If you do not want to go to the police, other resources are available to you.

Some people can help you through this difficult time. Here are some resources that may be helpful:

  • National Sexual Assault Hotline 1-800-656-HOPE (4673)
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
  • Abuse Counseling & Treatment 1-800-799-7233

Remember, it is not your fault. You did not deserve what happened to you. You are not alone. There is help available, and you can get through this.

There are several things you can do to help yourself heal after being sexually abused:

  • Seek professional help. A qualified therapist can provide you with support and guidance as you work through your trauma.
  • Talk about what happened. Expressing your feelings can help heal the emotional damage of sexual abuse.
  • Be patient with yourself. Healing from the trauma of sexual abuse takes time, but you are working on re-establishing your control over your life.
  • Take care of yourself. Spend time doing things that please you, such as exercising or meditating. These activities can help relieve stress and improve your mood. Also, be sure to eat healthily and get enough sleep.
  • Address the short-term symptoms of sexual abuse. If you have trouble sleeping or focusing on your work, talk to your doctor about treatment options. Sometimes medications can help reduce anxiety, depression, and PTSD(post-traumatic stress disorder) caused by sexual abuse.

Although it is not necessary to confront your abuser to heal, some victims find it helpful. If you choose to confront your abuser, be sure to have a support system in place. You can talk to a therapist or a friend about what you plan to say, and they can help you through the process.

Reporting Sexual Assault

Sexual assault is a crime that can occur in any relationship, whether between two strangers or between two people in a relationship. It can occur when someone is forced to have sexual intercourse against their will or when they are forced to take part in any other sexual activity.

If you have been the victim of sexual assault, it is important to report it to the police as soon as possible. Only reported cases of sexual violence can hold the sexual predator accountable in criminal courts.

You may feel scared or ashamed, but remember that you are not alone, and you did not deserve what happened to you. The police will take your sexual violence case seriously and do everything to prosecute the perpetrator.

There are different types of sex assault, including rape, incest, and statutory rape. In addition, each state has different laws about these crimes, so it is important to familiarize yourself with your state's statute of limitations.

The statute of limitations is the amount of time a prosecutor must file criminal charges against a suspect. This time limit varies by state, typically around 5 to 10 years.

Once the statute of limitations expires, the prosecutor can no longer file charges against the suspect. So if you do not report the crime within the allotted time, you may not get justice.

Elgin sexual abuse victims have the legal right to recover compensation through a civil suit typically filed by a personal injury lawyer.

Sexual Assault Is Never the Victim's Fault

It's important to remember that sexual assault is a crime, and it is never the victim's fault. If you have been the victim of sexual assault, please don't hesitate to reach out for help. Many resources are available to you, including the police and local rape crisis centers. You are not alone.

If you have been a victim of sexual abuse, there are steps you can take to protect yourself and stop the crime from happening again.

  • Do not blame yourself for what happened. If someone assaulted you, it is never your fault - no matter what you were wearing or whether you resisted. You did not deserve to be assaulted.
  • Seek professional help. A therapist can provide you with support and guidance as you work through your trauma.
  • Talk about what happened. Expressing your feelings can help heal the emotional damage of sexual abuse.
  • Take care of yourself. Spend time doing things that please you, such as exercising or meditating. These activities can help relieve stress and improve your mood. Also, be sure to eat healthily and get enough sleep.
  • Address the short-term symptoms of sexual abuse. If you have trouble sleeping or focusing on your work, talk to your doctor about treatment options. Sometimes medications can help reduce anxiety and depression caused by sexual assault.

If you choose to confront your abuser, be sure to have a support system in place. For example, you can talk to a therapist or a friend about what you plan to say, and they can help you through the process.

Remember that it is never too late to seek help for sexual assault. Although the statute of limitations is typically 5-10 years, some states have removed or extended the time limit. So, if you choose to report your abuse after the statute of limitations has expired, it is still possible for a stranger to be prosecuted for what they did.

Please visit the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network website.

Hiring a Sexual Abuse Lawyer at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC Helping Sexual Abuse Victims

If you or a loved one has suffered from sexual abuse, contact the Law Firm of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC. Call an Elgin sexual abuse lawyer at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone number) or use the contact form today for immediate legal assistance during a free consultation.

Our legal team accepts every civil claim and wrongful death lawsuit on a contingency fee basis. This promise ensures that you pay nothing until our personal injury law firm resolves your sexual violence civil suit through a negotiated settlement or jury award.

All confidential or sensitive information you share about your sex abuse incident with your sexual abuse attorney remains private through an attorney-client relationship. Our Elgin sexual abuse lawyers will fight for you to get the justice you deserve.

Elgin Sexual Abuse Lawyer Resources:

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Jonathan Rosenfeld was professionally objective, timely, and knowledgeable. Also, his advice was extremely effective regarding my case. In addition, Jonathan was understanding and patient pertaining to any of my questions or concerns. I was very happy with the end result and I highly recommend Jonathan Rosenfeld. Michonne Proulx
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Extremely impressed with this law firm. They took control of a bad motorcycle crash that left my uncle seriously injured. Without any guarantee of a financial recovery, they went out and hired accident investigators and engineers to help prove how the accident happened. I am grateful that they worked on a contingency fee basis as there was no way we could have paid for these services on our own. Ethan Armstrong
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This lawyer really helped me get compensation for my motorcycle accident case. I know there is no way that I could have gotten anywhere near the amount that Mr. Rosenfeld was able to get to settle my case. Thank you. Daniel Kaim
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Jonathan helped my family heal and get compensation after our child was suffered a life threatening injury at daycare. He was sympathetic and in constant contact with us letting us know all he knew every step of the way. We were so blessed to find Jonathan! Giulia
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Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was impressed at how well prepared Jonathan was to take the case to trial. Lisa