Sexual Abuse

Litigation: It's What We Do.

Calabasas Sexual Abuse Attorneys

Compassionate, Results-Driven Counsel in Los Angeles County

Sexual assault and abuse are heinous acts that can leave lasting physical and emotional scars. In California, victims have the right to pursue justice through both the civil court system. While criminal prosecution focuses on punishing the perpetrator, a personal injury lawsuit allows the victim to seek compensation for the damages they've suffered.

Navigating a personal injury claim, especially one of a sensitive nature, can be complex and emotionally challenging. However, for survivors of sexual abuse, it can be a powerful tool for obtaining not only compensation but a sense of justice.

Gaines & Gaines, APLC proudly offers counsel to victims/survivors of sexual assault and abuse. If you or a loved one wish to pursue damages, our firm is here and ready to help with your civil case. Whether you have experienced adult or childhood abuse, we are prepared to offer you comprehensive counsel.

Call (866) 400-4450 or reach out online to schedule a consultation and discuss your case in further detail.

Civil vs. Criminal Cases for Sexual Abuse Survivors

In criminal cases, the primary goals are to punish the offender and safeguard the public. The state, through the district attorney's office, prosecutes the accused. To obtain a conviction, the prosecution must establish the defendant's guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, which is a very stringent standard. If convicted, the offender may face fines, imprisonment, and probation, as well as mandated registration as a sex offender.

Civil cases allow you, the victim (plaintiff), to seek compensation for damages caused by the sexual abuse or assault. These damages can cover financial losses like medical bills and lost wages, as well as non-financial losses like pain and suffering, and emotional distress.

The burden of proof is lower in civil cases compared to criminal cases. You only need to prove the defendant's liability by a preponderance of the evidence, meaning it's more likely than not that the abuse or assault occurred. If successful, you may be awarded monetary damages from the defendant.

The main difference between criminal and civil cases lies in their goals. Criminal cases aim for punishment, while civil cases focus on providing financial compensation to the victim. Additionally, the burden of proof is significantly lower in civil cases, making it potentially easier for the victim to win. Finally, the outcome differs—criminal cases result in punishment for the offender, while civil cases result in financial compensation for the victim.

The outcome of a criminal case does not affect a civil case, and vice versa. You can pursue both legal avenues independently. However, be advised that the pursuit of criminal charges is at the discretion of the prosecution; while you are the decision maker and driving force in civil cases, the state is the one pursuing charges in criminal matters.

California Extends Civil Action Window for Childhood Sexual Abuse Survivors

In October 2023, California passed Assembly Bill 452. This legislation eliminates the previous statute of limitations for filing civil lawsuits related to childhood sexual assault.

Previously, survivors had a limited window to seek compensation for damages suffered as a result of abuse. AB 452 removes this restriction, allowing individuals to pursue civil action regardless of how much time has passed since the incident.

This change is particularly impactful because the psychological effects of childhood sexual abuse can often manifest later in life. Survivors may not be ready or able to confront the abuse and its consequences until years or even decades after it occurred. AB 452 acknowledges this reality and empowers survivors to seek justice on their own terms.

Some of the key points survivors of childhood sexual abuse should be aware of include:

  • AB 452 applies to civil lawsuits for childhood sexual abuse that occurred on or after January 1, 2024.
  • If your abuse happened before this date, you should consult with an attorney to determine your options under the previous law.
  • This legislation eliminates the need to file a lawsuit within a specific timeframe, but it's advisable to consult with an attorney as soon as possible to preserve evidence and build a strong case.
  • If a claimant can prove that their abuse or assault was covered up (i.e., steps were taken in a concerted effort to conceal evidence of the abuse), they may be eligible to receive treble damages.

Relentless Counsel for Sexual Abuse Survivors

At Gaines & Gaines, APLC, our sexual abuse attorneys have years of experience handling complex sexual abuse cases. We have recovered millions of dollars in compensation for our clients, and even more importantly, we are trusted by our past clients.

When you choose our firm to handle your sexual abuse case, you can expect the following:

  • Strong advocacy. We are not afraid to stand up for our clients in court, as we are skilled litigators. We are also equipped to handle mediation and other alternative dispute resolutions.
  • Extensive experience. You can trust that your case is in good and experienced hands, as our team is backed by over five decades of collective experience.
  • Responsive communication. We understand that our clients have a lot on their plates, so we are committed to providing responsive communication. We can keep you informed about the status of your case, and we can promptly respond to your calls, emails, and questions.
  • Confidentiality. We take the utmost care in protecting our clients’ sensitive information.
  • Protection from retaliation. We can take steps to help protect you from harassment or retaliation.

Contact Our Sexual Abuse Lawyers Today

Our sexual abuse attorneys are here to help you get the justice and compensation you deserve. We know that these cases are highly personal and sensitive. That is why we provide the compassionate, one-on-one legal guidance our clients need and deserve.

Request a free initial consultation with our sexual abuse attorneys by calling (866) 400-4450.

Results That Speak for Themselves

Our Successes
  • $3,003,000 Demanda laboral colectiva
  • $2,200,000 Demanda laboral colectiva
  • $2,500,000 Demanda laboral colectiva