Sexual Abuse Victim Resources
Were You Sexually Abused As A Child?
Whether it’s happened in the foster care system, at the church or in school—incidences of childhood sexual abuse are far too common. If it has happened to you, you’re not alone. We get calls almost every single day from people of all ages and genders that have gone through something horrific when they were young.
Washington Law Center takes on these cases. We take on individuals, institutions or even the state when necessary.
Defining Childhood Sexual Abuse
Video Transcript: Was I Sexually Abused?
ATTORNEY SARA SHEIKH: Nearly any form of inappropriate of sexual conduct perpetuated against a minor can provide for a cause of action in Washington. The legislature allows minors to sue for many forms of childhood sexual abuse including molestation, sexual misconduct which could include sexual touching or rubbing, indecent liberties, voyeurism, and, of course, any form of rape.
We believe victims deserve justice for all forms of childhood sexual abuse. There is no one-size-fits-all type of abuse. Many victims are just groomed and then convinced to participate in sexual misconduct. These victims tend to believe they’re not victims at all. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Our attorneys want to hear your story and will provide you safe space to talk. We want to know what has happened, no matter how long ago. We want to pursue justice for you.
Click through the different areas below to learn more.
Touching and Non-Touching Behaviors
Sexual abuse does not have to involve penetration, force, or even touching. If an individual engages in any unwanted behavior that is sexually motivated, including looking or showing, it is considered sexual abuse. This includes the manufacturing, distribution, and viewing of child pornography.
A Gradual Abuse Process
Childhood sexual abuse is most often a prolonged, manipulative series of events that includes multiple accounts of abuse. It is important to pay attention to changes in a child’s behavior to spot signs or warnings that abuse is occurring. Listen and ask questions if you hear mentions of abuse described or brought up in conversation. Speaking up will give the victim a chance to come forward and to stop the cycle of sexual abuse.
Multiple Accounts of Sexual Abuse
It’s possible that if you have experienced sexual abuse and have not reported it, you are not the only one that your abuser has targeted. If you feel that the person who abused you as a child posed a threat to another child or adult, it is important to share your concerns immediately. It’s never too late for justice to be served.
Survivors Lead The Way
Though it can seem impossible to come forward and speak out about your experiences with sexual abuse, your bravery will have a profound impact on your healing and the lives of others. Many adults who have been sexually abused as children believe it is too late to come forward, but Washington Law Center is here to help guide you through the process of recovery by seeking justice against your abuser or any other party who may be liable for your pain and suffering.
Working With A Sexual Abuse Lawyer
Video Transcript: I Want to File a Sexual Abuse Claim, Now What?
ATTORNEY SARA SHEIKH: We want to commend you on taking this step. You may have been living with this for years, or even decades, and we know that coming forward is not easy.
ATTORNEY ASHTON DENNIS: You may not have disclosed your abuse to your family or your friends, and that’s okay. You may be afraid of your abuser or the institution that failed to protect you, and that’s okay. You may not remember every detail, and that’s okay.
ATTORNEY SARA SHEIKH: You may have questions on how the process works, and that’s okay. You may have never told a soul about your abuse as a child, and that’s okay.
ATTORNEY ASHTON DENNIS: The first step is reaching out. We can have a phone consultation, if that’s most comfortable for you. We can meet in person. We most certainly have the ability to meet you in a virtual setting.
ATTORNEY SARA SHEIKH: Do not expect your first call with Washington Law Center to be an interrogation. We want to meet you, and provide you with a space to tell your story. We will listen and discuss your options. We are here for you and we’re ready to help.
I Was Abused As A Child, Can I Still File A Claim?
Washington state is somewhat lenient in its statute of limitations (or the amount of time you have to file a lawsuit for sexual abuse) but you need to know how to apply it. At Washington Law Center, our sexual abuse attorneys have years of experience fighting for our clients who were victims of sexual abuse. Just because childhood abuse happened decades ago doesn’t mean you’re without options, call us today for support and answers to your legal questions.
Do I Have A Case?
Whether it is accidental or intentional, if you have been impacted by sexual abuse as a child or as an adult, Washington Law Center can help answer if you have a case from a legal standpoint. Our legal team feels strongly that people who have been wronged in this manner should be given all the assistance they need. The first step is to reach out to an experienced sexual abuse attorney.
Can I Afford A Lawyer?
There’s a misconception that a personal injury attorney costs too much money and that you can’t afford one. Washington Law Center is different. We do not get paid upfront. Unless we get you compensated there are no attorney fees. Don’t let these common misconceptions prevent you from seeking the help you need and deserve.
What Is My Sexual Abuse Claim Worth?
No two sexual abuse cases are the same. It is important to find an experienced sexual abuse attorney who puts in the work to learn and understand the details of your case before giving you a number or making false promises to you and your loved ones.
How Long Does The Process Take?
Sexual Abuse Victim Resources
Where Is Sexual Abuse Most Likely To Occur?
Unfortunately, many of the places where we hope to feel or are made to feel most safe are the places where sexual abuse is prevalent. The following are some of the most common.
Foster Care – (CPS abuse, DSHS abuse, etc)
Boy Scouts of America Organization
Schools – Teachers, Counselors, Employees
Churches or Religious Institutions
Mental Health Facilities
What is the Statute of Limitations for childhood sexual abuse in Washington?
In the state of Washington, pursuant to RCW 4.16.190, children’s claims for injuries are extended until they reach the age of majority. This means that children that have been the victim of someone else’s negligence or intentional actions of sexual abuse have until the age of 18 before the statute of limitations begins to run.
Washington has even more protections built in for children who have been the victim of childhood sexual abuse. According to RCW 4.16.340, a child who has been the victim of sexual abuse may have much a longer window (potentially indefinitely) to file their claim and seek compensation from the perpetrator.
At Washington Law Center, our lawyers for childhood sex abuse have been able to pursue claims on behalf of victims of childhood sexual abuse well into their adulthood. In one case, our client was nearly sixty years of age. Sadly, victims are often unable to realize how childhood sexual abuse has been impacting them their entire life but there is hope. Contact us today.
What Are The Lifelong Effects of Childhood Sexual Abuse?
If you’re questioning whether or not you have a case, the following effects of trauma are important to consider.
- Anxiety disorders
- Personality Disorders including Depression
- Relationship / Intimacy Issues
- Eating Disorders
- Mental Disorders, Anger, etc
The largest anti-sexual violence organization in the nation.
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Case Results From Past Sexual Abuse Victims
$3,500,000 – Sexual Abuse by School Teacher (2022)
Settlement with Marysville School District for $3,500,000 along with a written apology for sexual abuse to two students by a longtime teacher and cheerleading adviser in mid-1980s.
$1,600,000 – Youth Abused in Foster Care
D.Y. v. DSHS resulted in a $1,600,000 settlement for a man that was repeatedly abused as a child in multiple foster care settings where he and his siblings were placed. (2018)
$1,500,000 – Prolonged Child Abuse in Foster Care
In K.F. v. DSHS involving a child and his/her adoptive parents, $1,500,000 was recovered due to negligent placement in foster care that led to horrific prolonged abuse of the child. (2017)
No Fee Until You Win
OVER $100 MILLION AWARDED TO OUR CLIENTS BY VERDICT, SETTLEMENT, INJURY PENSION OR JUDGMENT