Fighting For Important Causes In State And Federal Courts
Unfortunately, there are a staggering number of Catholic priests who have abused children entrusted to their care. In recent years, the true severity of this issue has been uncovered. If you or a loved one is a survivor of abuse by a Catholic priest, hiring an experienced attorney can help you get the justice you deserve.
Filing a lawsuit against a Catholic priest is not easy. It can be daunting for survivors to name their abuser, especially if the perpetrator is a prominent community member, like a Catholic priest. If you suspect that you were abused as a minor or are certain and are now ready to pursue litigation, speak with a compassionate attorney. You will learn that you can sue the responsible priest for sexual abuse and may also be able to hold the Catholic Church itself responsible. However, survivors need to know that each state has a different statute of limitations regarding suing for sexual abuse. If you attempt to file past the deadline, you could lose your right to sue a Catholic priest for sexual abuse.
The Law Office of Andrew Shubin is dedicated to supporting victims of abuse by a Catholic priest. Our team can guide you through filing a lawsuit against a perpetrator and help you get the justice you deserve. Call the caring attorneys for victims of abuse by a Catholic priest at The Law Office of Andrew Shubin today at (814) 826-3586 for a free and confidential case review.
When to Hire an Attorney for Abuse by a Catholic Priest
It can take years for victims of sexual abuse to comprehend their experience. Especially for those abused as children, coping with the truth of what happened to you can take a long time. It can become even more difficult to accept when your abuser is a trusted confidante, like a Catholic priest. Sometimes, survivors are not aware that the actions of a priest were abusive until years after the fact. If you have just realized that you were abused or are simply ready to sue the responsible offender, it may be time to hire an attorney.
Abuse is not always obvious. When children are abused, it can be difficult for them to understand. Sometimes, it is not until a survivor reaches adulthood that they can see the abuse for what it is. However, memories can get clouded, and they can still be hard to accept. If you believe that you were abused but have not yet been able to classify your experience, consult with a compassionate attorney. The attorneys for victims of abuse by a Catholic priest at The Law Office of Andrew Shubin can listen to your story and help you understand whether or not you have a case. Sometimes, victims delay coming forward out of fear that their experience will be dismissed. Our attorneys can validate you as a survivor of abuse by a Catholic priest. Our team of dedicated lawyers can help our clients find beneficial resources for survivors that promote healing and empower them to step forward about abuse.
Because it can take a long time for survivors to feel comfortable coming forward with abuse, you should hire an attorney when you are ready. When children are abused, especially by a person they admire, it can be difficult to identify the wrongs done to them until many years later. Rushing into a lawsuit may not help your healing process. That being said, it is very important to file within your state’s statute of limitations. Otherwise, you may lose your right to sue the Catholic priest responsible for abusing you.
Statute of Limitations for Suing a Catholic Priest for Abuse
There is no national statute of limitations for suing a Catholic priest for abuse. Each state has different laws regarding a filing deadline. For the most part, states approach childhood abuse cases with a certain level of leniency. In recent years, there has been a national push to extend the statute of limitations in each state to align with victims’ needs. However, not all states have heeded that request from survivors; some states have not extended the statute of limitations for childhood victims.
In terms of the law, Catholic priests are treated like any other defendant in an abuse lawsuit. However, partially due to the recent increase in sexual abuse allegations against Catholic priests, many states have taken a closer look at the statute of limitations for childhood sexual abuse victims. Many states have a much longer filing deadline for those who were victims as a minor. That is because the emotional trauma of childhood sexual abuse can cause survivors to block out the experience until later in life. Children cannot always identify abuse, especially when it is perpetrated by a seemingly reliable figure, like a Catholic priest.
Many states have begun offering extensions to minor victims in response to many survivors coming forward and the fight for victims’ rights. For example, some states now allow tolling, which extends the statute of limitations in situations where a victim was a minor at the time of the abuse. Other states have created look-back windows, which allow victims to seek justice against a perpetrator, regardless of when the childhood abuse occurred, within a particular timeframe. Increasingly, states are adopting new legislation that changes the statute of limitations for all abuse victims, especially childhood survivors of abuse by a Catholic priest.
Survivors should know that not all states have reexamined the statute of limitations for civil sexual abuse lawsuits. In fact, some states do not differentiate between the statute of limitations for adult and minor victims. That means survivors of childhood sexual abuse by a Catholic priest may only have a few years to file a lawsuit. For many survivors, that is not enough time to come to terms with the fact that they have been abused. That is why it is important to stay up to date on your state’s filing deadline. Statutes of limitations vary from state to state may even change within your state. Giving survivors the extended ability to sue an abuser remains a prominent issue.
How to Sue a Catholic Priest for Abuse
As more and more survivors come forward with allegations of sexual abuse, it has become clear that Catholic priests have harmed countless children. In recent years, lawsuits against Catholic priests have uncovered the awful truth that the Church itself has hidden the actions of its clergy. Suing a Catholic priest for abuse can be daunting. That being said, it is possible with the help of a skilled attorney.
The first step in suing a Catholic priest is deciding to do so. It is up to you, as a survivor, to decide when you are ready to pursue civil litigation. You might feel pressure from family, friends, or the Church not to file. However, it is your choice and yours alone.
When suing a Catholic priest for abuse, you have the power. It is important to the compassionate attorneys for victims of abuse by a Catholic priest at The Law Office of Andrew Shubin that survivors feel empowered and protected. That way, you can comfortably proceed in a lawsuit, knowing that those representing your interests care about your wellbeing. Hiring an empathetic, skilled attorney is necessary to successfully sue a Catholic priest for abuse.
Once you have enlisted the help of an experienced legal team, the next step is an investigation. Because it can take years for minor survivors of sexual abuse to come forward, it can be difficult to uncover evidence to support your claim. That being said, many survivors of sexual abuse have successfully sued a Catholic priest who abused them in the past.
Because of the nature of these cases, your lawyer should be practiced in investigating instances of sexual abuse that date back several years. It is not uncommon for the Catholic Church to relocate offending priests to new parishes and areas. Your lawyer will work to prove that the responsible priest did, in fact, abuse you and that the Church played a part in allowing that abuse to continue.
How to Sue the Church for Abuse by a Catholic Priest
While you can certainly pursue litigation against an individual Catholic priest for abuse, you may also be able to sue the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church is an institution with a history of sexual abuse to minors, which is an unfortunate truth that has been uncovered in recent years. Over the past decade or so, it has come to light just how involved the Church has been in covering up abuse allegations. If a Catholic priest abused you, it is possible that the Church itself allowed that abuse to happen.
When investigating a Catholic priest for sexual abuse, your attorney may discover that the Catholic Church allowed it to occur, whether because of negligent or intentional acts. Churches are commonly seen as a safe space for children. They have programs where children can learn more about their religion. There are methods through which children are involved in church proceedings and events. In the past, a church was a place a child could go to for comfort and guidance.
Unfortunately, it has been revealed that many priests have taken advantage of vulnerable children throughout the years. And, by extension, that the Catholic Church itself played a role in allowing abuse.
As more survivors have sued the Church and Catholic priests for sexual abuse, it has become clear that the Church has ignored abuse allegations in the past. Because of this, the institution itself can be found responsible for the abuse done to you with the help of the compassionate attorneys for victims of abuse by a Catholic priest at The Law Office of Andrew Shubin.
If the Church relocated a known offender to your parish, you could sue it for abuse. If the Church failed to investigate allegations or report abuse in a state where clergy are considered mandated reporters, you could file a lawsuit. You can hold the Church and an individual priest responsible for any abuse you endured.
Damages in a Catholic Priest Abuse Lawsuit
Survivors who sue a Catholic priest for abuse can receive damages with the help of a skilled attorney. In instances of sexual abuse, victims can experience severe difficulties, especially if the abuse occurred when they were a minor. When this happens, survivors are entitled to significant damages. Suing a Catholic priest can not only result in your being awarded monetary damages, but you can also get the justice you deserve.
In terms of damages, there are two main types: economic and non-economic. The former attempts to compensate plaintiffs for the financial costs incurred because of a defendant’s actions. In Catholic priest abuse cases, the wrongdoings of a defendant can make a victim require a significant amount of treatment and therapy. Abuse can result in other things that cause financial difficulties as well. If you sue a Catholic priest for abuse, you may be able to receive compensation for any costs you incurred as a direct result of that abuse.
It can be difficult to prove the need for non-economic damages, depending on the nature of a lawsuit. In Catholic priest sexual abuse cases, it is usually quite clear how abuse can result in substantial pain and suffering. Healing from abuse takes time, especially for minor victims. The impact of abuse can be significant and may lead to emotional difficulties. When you enlist the help of the attorneys for victims of abuse by a Catholic priest at The Law Office of Andrew Shubin, our team will aim to recover damages that can help you heal.
Rarely are sexual abuse lawsuits about money. Yes, being compensated for the financial impact of abuse is helpful for many victims. However, it is difficult to quantify the emotional trauma abuse by a Catholic priest can cause. When survivors sue an offender for sexual abuse, it is to reclaim their story and to empower others to do the same. Coming forward with allegations of abuse can be difficult. But knowing that they can receive justice for the wrongs done to them is often what encourages survivors to name their abuser in a lawsuit.
Call Our Attorneys If You Were Abused by a Catholic Priest
Survivors of abuse by a Catholic priest deserve an opportunity to seek justice from all responsible parties. For a free, confidential case review, call the caring attorneys for victims of abuse by a Catholic priest at The Law Office of Andrew Shubin today at (814) 826-3586.