Institutional sexual abuse
It is one of the darkest areas of Australian life, although in recent times new light has been shed on it and society understands the truth and the pain that its victims have experienced in private. Institutional sexual abuse has harmed more people and ruined more lives than almost any other criminal problem. We trust schools, hospitals, churches, religious organisations, scouting organisations, care homes, government agencies and youth groups to take care of children. Sexual abuse committed by staff of any of these places is a cruel betrayal and can have lifelong consequences.
Huge efforts over many years have brought perpetrators of sexual abuse to justice. Victims can now have their stories heard in fair and empathetic ways. The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse is the latest and largest project to help victims come forward. However, while it is vindicating and liberating for victims and their families for these stories to be told, attaining justice and compensation for the devastating harm and suffering caused by institutional sexual abuse can seem daunting and difficult.
Take courage. Claiming compensation from the institution responsible for the sexual abuse that happened to you, or to someone in your family, can secure the payout you need to improve and stabilise your life, to live in dignity. Compensation might not erase the memories of institutional abuse or heal the damage and hurt it has caused you and your family, but it can go a long way towards easing your pain, reducing your suffering and showing those responsible that they are not above justice.
Milicevic Solicitors are dedicated compensation lawyers with one of Australia’s most respected records of achievement. No case is too small to consider or investigate. No matter what your story is, no matter when or where the sexual abuse took place, you have a right to come forward, tell your story and claim compensation. Contact Milicevic Solicitors today to find out how.
Telling your story and building your sexual abuse compensation claim
Institutional sexual abuse is a deeply upsetting experience and can cause lifelong psychological harm, affecting victims’ family lives, relationships, health and employability. The first and most important thing you should do if you have suffered sexual abuse, or someone close to you has, is to seek professional psychological help. There are many organisations that can help you, by listening to your story, offering ongoing counselling and other care and finding you any further help you may need, at no charge.
Coming forward and facing your trauma, or helping a family member to do so, may be difficult, so it is essential that you feel well supported before you consider taking any further steps.
If you do feel that claiming compensation with a legal case is the right thing to do, then you can rest assured that the legal team at Milicevic Solicitors is ready, open and able to hear your story and advise you on all your legal options, with empathy and dignity. The legal team will approach your case with great care and listen to anything and everything you believe is relevant. They will also ask the right questions in the right way, treating you with respect and creating an environment in which you feel comfortable. The legal options and potential strategies that the team will outline for you will be based on what they believe the best outcome will be.
What compensation is available for institutional sexual abuse?
Long-term time limits for sexual abuse claims
You are eligible to claim compensation for institutional sexual abuse no matter when the abuse occurred and no matter what the institution was. The institution’s duty of care can be tested at any time – and, most importantly, the effects of the experience of abuse may last for years, or may have been repressed for a long time. If your life, or a member of your family’s life, has been affected by sexual abuse, you have the right to claim compensation, to aid your recovery and ease your pain.
Which institutions can be implicated in sexual abuse compensation claims?
Compensation claims can be made against many different kinds of institutions: schools (private and public), care facilities (run by governments or NGOs, including charities or religious organisations), churches and church-affiliated bodies, temples, mosques, youth groups, scouting organisations, sports organisations, or any group or body in which adults are responsible for the care of children.
What is covered by sexual abuse compensation?
You can claim compensation for many of the effects of sexual abuse on your life, or on the life of someone close to you. Some compensation payments could be spread out over long periods – for example, to cover ongoing medical or care costs – or they could be made as a lump sum. These payments could cover:
- Suffering, pain and psychological harm
- Medical costs, including for psychological care, both short- and long-term
- Lost earnings, past and future; in some cases, you may need to show that the abuse has disrupted your ability to work
- Costs of mounting a compensation case
No matter how traumatic the memories or how harmful the effects, sexual abuse is a very serious crime and you deserve justice and compensation for what it has made you and your family suffer.
There are hundreds of caring people and organisations ready to help sexual abuse victims at all stages in life. Milicevic Solicitors are, too. The legal team understands how important a compensation payout could be for you and how important it is to seek justice from the people responsible. As dedicated compensation lawyers, Milicevic Solicitors stand ready to hear your story and to advise and assist you. Find out what Milicevic can do for you by calling (02) 9264 6499 today.