Were You or Someone You Know Sexually Abused as a Child?
As one of the first firms in the United States to hold the Catholic Church accountable for abuse of children, Tremont Sheldon Robinson Mahoney P.C. has represented over 180 victims of childhood sexual abuse since 1993. Our cases have resulted in recovering over $70 million for our clients.
Powerful Advocates for the Survivors of Sexual Abuse
In our years of pursuing justice for abuse survivors, our lawyers have not hesitated to take on the most powerful people, institutions and organizations. Our firm continues to fight for sexual abuse victims and is currently representing victims abused as minors by teachers or coaches at public, private and parochial schools throughout the state of Connecticut, as well as by clergy or nuns at religious institutions and doctors and medical professionals such as EMTs and nursing aides at hospitals and medical facilities.
It is important to note that under Connecticut law, any person who claims damages as a result of being molested, sexually abused, sexually assaulted or sexually exploited as a minor has until 30 years past the age of majority (typically until age 48) in which to file a claim in court. Those who are abused after October 1, 2019 have until they turn 51 years of age to bring a claim. Our firm continues to represent clients who were abused as children in the 80s and 90s.
Child Sexual Abuse Frequently Asked Questions
What is the statute of limitations with regard to filing a sexual abuse claim?
A. Most victims who claim damages for sexual abuse, sexual assault or sexual exploitation as a child can file a claim up to 30 years past the age of abuse (typically until the age of 48) in Connecticut. Those who are abused after October 1, 2019 have until they turn 51 years of age to bring a claim.
However, if you claim damages as a result of being sexually assaulted as an adult, then you have a much shorter time period in which to file a lawsuit. Typically, you have three years from the date of the assault to file against the perpetrator for his or her intentional acts and two years from the date of the assault to file against any other person or entity (e.g., perpetrator’s employer) who may have been negligent in allowing the perpetrator to have contact with you.
If there is a criminal case presently pending against the perpetrator, can I still file a civil suit?
A. Yes. The two cases can proceed at the same time, but there may be reasons to wait, if possible, until the criminal case concludes.
I do not want my identity revealed. Is there a way that I can file a claim and remain anonymous?
A. You can ask permission from the court to file your case under a pseudonym (e.g., Jane Doe or John Doe). It is up to the judge to grant or deny your request.
Why Choose Us?
A. Tremont Sheldon Robinson Mahoney P.C. has more than 50 years of experience handling personal injury and abuse cases. We are specialists in personal injury cases. Why does this matter? Our firm only handles personal injury cases and understands the ins and outs of these cases, and as a result we have a history of proven success against insurance companies, hospitals, schools, churches, and other negligent parties.
How Do You Prove a Molestation Case?
A. Child sexual abuse can take many forms and be difficult to prove, especially if the physical injuries are no longer present. However, many physicians and behavioral specialists are able to spot the warning signs of sexual abuse in children and can help build a strong case against the abuser. Our lawyers are experienced in working with the right experts to help with your claim.
Can You Sue a Teacher for Sexual Abuse?
A. Yes. Teachers can be held liable in a civil claim for sexual abuse against minor students. Like with all civil claims for child sexual abuse, it is important to work with an attorney right away to make sure all evidence is collected and documented to help build your case.
What Are My Legal Rights if I Was Sexually Abused as a Child?
A. Our lawyers represent victims who were sexually abused as children (under the age of 18). The law only allows victims to bring a claim up until the age of 48. Do not wait to learn about your legal options if you were the victim of sexual abuse as a minor.
What is the difference between criminal and civil cases? Is there a different burden of proof?
A. Many people know that the burden of proof (or evidence needed to prove the case) in a criminal case is beyond a reasonable doubt. Criminal cases require a very high standard because being found guilty of a crime is at stake as well as the potential to go to jail. In a civil case, no one is accused of a crime and cannot be found guilty. Instead, the question in a civil case is whether a person was negligent and responsible for damages to another. The burden of proof in a civil case is lower (easier to prove) than in a criminal case. The standard to win a case is “more likely than not” that the person was at fault, or proof of just over 50 percent responsible.
The perpetrator is now dead. Can I still file a claim?
A. Yes. A claim can be filed against the estate of the perpetrator. However, there are very strict and short time restrictions for doing so.
Who are mandated reporters of suspected child abuse?
A. Under Connecticut law, the following people are mandated reporters of suspected child abuse: doctors; nurses; medical examiners; dentists; dental hygienists; psychologists; coaches; school teachers; school principals; school guidance counselors; school paraprofessionals; social workers; police officers; juvenile or adult probation and parole officers; members of the clergy; pharmacists; physical therapists; optometrists; chiropractors; podiatrists; mental health professionals; physician’s assistants; certified EMT providers; certified drug and alcohol counselors; licensed marital and family therapists; sexual assault and battered women’s counselors; paid child care providers in public or private facilities; child day care centers; licensed group and family day care centers; employees of the Department of Children and Families or the Department of Public Health if responsible for licensing day care centers, homes, or youth camps; and employees of the Office of the Child Advocate, including designated Child Advocates.
Any person so identified who in the course of his or her employment or profession has reasonable cause to believe or suspect that a child has been abused or neglected or has been inflicted with non-accidental injuries or is at imminent risk of serious harm must report or cause a report to be made in accordance with state law. Violation of the law will result in a monetary fine and required participation in an educational and training program. See Connecticut General Statutes Sections 17-101(b); 17a-101a.