Child abuse is a nightmare that no parent ever wants to confront, but, sadly, it does happen. After discovering that their child has been abused, parents can often feel angry and powerless. That is why it is so important to take action against those who committed the abuse or allowed it to happen. Criminal charges are often filed by the State in child abuse cases, but, as a parent, you also have the right to file a lawsuit on your child's behalf against the abuser. In some cases, you can even hold businesses that employed the perpetrator liable for not making reasonable efforts to protect your child.
Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro & Halperin, LLP, is a top New York personal injury law firm that protects the rights of children. If your child has been the victim of abuse, you have the right to hold the abuser responsible. Your civil rights are completely separate from any criminal charges that might be brought against someone who has committed abuse. Please contact us today at (212) 986-7353 to discuss your case with one of our compassionate New York child abuse victim attorneys.
We would all like to believe that child abusers are monsters that we can easily recognize and keep away from our children. Sadly, people who abuse children look just like anyone else and often seem completely trustworthy. They are usually in a position of power, which lets them manipulate those who trust them, convincing children that abuse or neglect are normal forms of behavior.
Perpetrators of abuse can include:
- Teachers or other school administrators
- Daycare employees or managers
- Sports coaches or team managers
- Church or religious officials or members
- Family friends
- Family members
- Babysitters or caregivers
In some instances, employers can be held liable for allowing abuse to occur. This is most common in situations where a school or daycare failed to perform background checks on employees, ignored the results of such checks, or did not follow through on complaints or accusations by other employees or families. Such actions can be seen as negligence, since a reasonable person would perform proper background checks and take accusations seriously to protect children.
When it comes to recognizing and reporting abuse, it is very important to trust your instincts. It is remarkable how often a perpetrator is caught because a parent or friend "felt" something was wrong and followed up on that feeling. It is important to listen to children when they talk about something being wrong and ask questions to find out more details. If you have a strong suspicion that abuse is occurring, contact law enforcement and the New York State Office of Children and Family Services - Child Protective Services at (800) 342-3720.
Although there are many different specializations within the legal system, at the end of the day lawyers exist to protect people's rights in one way or another. A knowledgeable personal injury attorney with experience in child abuse cases can help protect your rights and those of your child, as well as help you take action against the person who harmed your child. We can help you talk with law enforcement, protect the identity of your child, and file a civil lawsuit against the person who committed the abuse and anyone else who allowed it to happen.
To ensure that you have the ability to hold your child's abuser responsible for the harmful acts that they committed, it is extremely important that you hire experienced legal representation immediately. It is understandable that parents may be hesitant to involve their child in litigation, but please know that there are many laws that protect children during such litigation. Taking this kind of action often helps young people and family members feel less powerless and regain a sense of control over their lives.
Although it is controversial, there are statutes of limitations regarding cases of child abuse in New York. This means that if a victim of child abuse does not file a timely claim against the abuser, he or she may not be able to seek justice.
Currently, someone only has five years after the age of majority to file a civil claim involving child abuse, which means it must be filed prior to the victim turning 23 years old. This may very well change, but it illustrates the importance of taking action right away against perpetrators of abuse.
At Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro & Halperin, LLP, we know that after abuse occurs, you, your child, and your family are going through an extremely difficult and emotional time. Our NY child injury lawyers represent victims of abuse with the greatest care and compassion. We have the knowledge, skill, and experience to handle even the most challenging cases, including those against childcare facilities, schools, and churches. Call us right now at (212) 986-7353 to discuss your options and learn about what we can do to help your child.