It manifests as grooming, forced sexual touch or jokes, coercion, and even exploitation. Clergy abuse comes in numerous forms and often, the environment it occurs in turns a deaf ear to victims. While it serves as a means of maintaining control and satisfying the abuser’s desires, survivors often struggle to fully recover on a mental, emotional, physical, or spiritual level.
The traumatic experience of being sexually abused by a clergy member may include a long road to recovery but with the help of our Southfield clergy sex abuse attorneys, financial recompense may be right around the corner.
White Law PLLC has a leading attorney who has successfully secured lucrative settlements for survivors of clergy and Boy Scouts of America sex abuse cases. Take advantage of our free consultation offer if you or someone you know has experienced clerical sex abuse, or keep reading to find out how to bring a successful claim for clergy sexual abuse.
What to Do If You Are Not Fully Ready to Take Legal Action
Our firm is aware of the challenges that you are facing as a surviving victim of sexual clergy abuse. While we guarantee compassionate legal support throughout your case, we understand your apprehension and still want to advise you of ways to prioritize your recovery and well-being at this time.
Firstly, visit your doctor to ensure that you are not experiencing undiagnosed issues. This may be hard to do if you need a parent’s consent and haven’t told anyone what’s happening. If you have someone that you trust, inform them of the abuse and try your best to document the details. This can look like journal entries, photos, videos, or even audio recordings.
For more privacy, you can ask to seek therapy or connect with support groups online or in person that can provide you with additional resources for help. Holding the clergymen accountable is key to preventing future abuse but there is no right or wrong time to take legal action. Our attorneys are here to help you when ready.
Your Fight Is Our Fight
Understand The Legal Process of Filing a Clergy Abuse Claim
Depending on the jurisdiction and the details of the case, the legal procedure for a clergy abuse case may differ. The process often starts with the filing of a complaint or lawsuit against the alleged abuser and any other accountable parties, such as the religious organization or supervisors who disregarded the victim’s needs.
Following the filing of the lawsuit, both parties will compile evidence, such as:
- Witness statements
- Medical records
- Your testimony
- The abuser’s testimony
- Employment records or background checks of the abuser
- Police reports
- Testimonies from expert witnesses such as forensic analysts or healthcare providers
After the above discovery stage, the parties may attempt to reach a resolution outside of court through mediation or settlement negotiation talks. The matter will move forward to trial if a settlement cannot be reached, where a judge or jury will hear the testimony and decide on how much will be awarded for your clergy abuse claim.
The legal process can be complicated and emotionally taxing, so it’s very helpful to work with knowledgeable clergy sex abuse attorneys in Southfield who can help them navigate it.
We’re not just lawyers. We’re passionate advocates who will ensure that your voice is heard and your rights are protected.
The Estimated Compensation for Survivors of Clergy Abuse
In any personal injury case, economic and non-economic damages are calculated by your legal team. To ensure that no settlement funds go unclaimed, your Southfield clergy sex abuse lawyer may employ financial advisors or medical professionals to estimate future costs to be included in your settlement. Typically, the average clergy abuse settlement includes the following elements:
- Medical expenses such as hospital stays, medical testing, medication, and ongoing treatment
- Lost income, including potential earning capacity for the future
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium
- Diminished enjoyment of life
- Exemplary damages
- Property loss
Additionally, some factors contribute to increasing your overall settlement such as:
- The extent to which you were abused
- The degree of disregard or recklessness by your abuser
- The amount of money the abuser or institution possesses
- The duration of your abuse
- Your age
- The level of authority or responsibility the abuser had at the time of abuse
In prioritizing your well-being first through doctor visits and documenting your abuse, you will maximize your settlement before even speaking with one of our Southfield clerical sex abuse attorneys.
We understand that you may be going through a difficult situation and we are ready to help however we can.
The Importance of Acting Quickly in Clergy Abuse Cases
It is strongly encouraged that victims of clerical abuse take immediate action and seek legal assistance as soon as they can. If you wait too long past the time the abuse started, the validity of your claim and the condition of your evidence may be deemed inadmissible. Also, there is a statute of limitations in place for Michigan but it comes with exceptions for abuse victims.
If the victim files a lawsuit before turning 28 years old, Michigan will allow them to pursue compensation for sexually abusive crimes committed against them while they were under the age of 18. Nonetheless, it is not suggested to delay reporting your abuse if you are ready and have ample opportunity to hold the perpetrator liable.
You will always work directly with your attorney throughout your case.
Do You Wish To Assess Your Clergy Abuse Damages Discreetly?
Seek the assistance of a knowledgeable and experienced Southfield clergy sex abuse attorney at White Law PLLC if you have been a victim of abuse, so we can give you the direction and support you require. Your settlement can be discreetly evaluated with the assistance of a lawyer, who can also make sure that your rights are upheld at all times.
To help you obtain the highest amount of compensation for your damages, we can also assist you in negotiating with insurance companies, gathering evidence, and building a solid case. Our lawyers can give you the knowledge and tools you need to decide on your next steps if you are unsure of whether you have a case or if you are not yet fully prepared to file a lawsuit.
Contact us today to schedule a private, risk-free consultation that is free of charge to you.
We’re Experienced. We Care.
We Exceed Client Expectations.