Murfreesboro Sexual Assault Lawyer
While criminal proceedings for sexual assault can lead to steep fines and significant prison time for those convicted of this offense, they do not pay compensation to the victims of the abuse. Fortunately, if you have experienced sexual abuse, you could have grounds to file suit in civil court and seek compensation from your abuser for both physical, mental, and emotional harm.
However, state law does not always establish “sexual abuse” as a specific cause of action for personal injury litigation all its own, so achieving success with this kind of case can be tricky without guidance from our experienced personal injury attorneys. A compassionate and dedicated Murfreesboro sexual assault lawyer at the Miller Injury Firm could work tirelessly and tenaciously on your behalf to hold your abuser financially accountable for every single injury and loss you sustained as a result of their actions.
Civil Versus Criminal Proceedings for Sexual Assault
A personal injury lawsuit over damages stemming from sexual assault would proceed entirely separately from any criminal case related to the same incident(s). This is primarily because civil cases and criminal cases have different standards of proof that you must meet in order for the court to rule in your favor.
Prosecutors in criminal cases must prove a defendant’s guilt “beyond a reasonable doubt” in order to secure a conviction, which means that they must make a completely inarguable case before the jury that the defendant actually committed the offense they are facing charges for. However, civil cases operate based on a “preponderance of evidence” standard of proof, meaning you must only prove that the defendant was more likely than not responsible for specific compensable damages.
As a result, the outcome of a civil case for sexual abuse generally has no bearing on the outcome of a related criminal case, and a person acquitted of sexual assault in criminal court may still be found liable for financial damages in a separate civil claim. Our Murfreesboro sexual assault attorneys could clarify how these types of cases work in more detail during a confidential consultation.
What are the Deadlines for Filing Suit Over Sexual Abuse?
Through a successful civil lawsuit, you may seek financial compensation for both economic and non-economic damages they suffered as a result of a defendant’s intentionally malicious actions. This means that in addition to objective financial losses like medical bills, you may also seek recovery for subjective losses like physical pain, emotional and psychological trauma, and the impact of conditions like PTSD.
However, Tennessee Code §28-3-116 sets a filing deadline of one year following the date of injury for most claims involving sexual abuse experienced by an adult, and three years after discovery of abuse experienced by a child. In light of this, the Miller Injury Firm encourages you to contact our sexual abuse lawyers near you about a potential claim sooner rather than later, as failing to adhere to these deadlines often makes civil recovery impossible.
Speak with Our Murfreesboro Sexual Assault Attorney About Your Legal Options
The prospect of filing suit against the person who abused you can be understandably intimidating, and you may have a lot of questions about how such a case would proceed and what your odds of success would be. Through a private initial consultation, our compassionate team could provide the answers and clarity you may need to take proactive legal action against the person who harmed you.
A Murfreesboro sexual assault lawyer at the Miller Injury Firm could help you seek financial justice for the abuse you experienced no matter what comes of a related criminal case. Call us today to schedule a confidential call or in-person meeting.