Maryland Church Sex Abuse Lawyer
CHASENBOSCOLO represents adults and children who suffered unthinkable sexual abuse by officials at their church. When someone’s trust and safety has been jeopardized by a predatory act, we will be there to take decisive legal action to hold the individual and organization responsible. Every person and entity that was complicit in these horrific acts should be held accountable. We’re here to help make sure that happens.
The compassionate Maryland church sex abuse attorneys at CHASENBOSCOLO know the frustration, anger, and emotional pain that can mount after bottling up years of sexual abuse. Exploiting a place of worship for one’s sexual gratification or gain is an unspeakable crime that should never go unpunished.
If you or someone you love experienced sexual abuse at the hands of clergypersons in Maryland, contact us immediately at (301) 220-0050. Phones are answered around the clock, seven days a week.
What is Church Sexual Abuse?
Like other forms of sexual assault, church sex abuse involves similar misdeeds, but church officials, priests, nuns, or other clergy perpetrate the acts. Young children and some vulnerable adults are lured by people they trust and respect and forced to participate in sexual acts.
If sexual abuse is discovered in time, the archdiocese will typically do an internal investigation and dismiss the offending official, although few are criminally prosecuted right away. Before anyone outside the church finds out about the abuse, many older clergypersons pass away, while others choose to be laicized.
Laicization, according to church law, is a process in which clerics freely request that they are disavowed from the clerical state. Often, this procedure takes place when clergy have been accused of sexual assault or similar charges, and they have reason to believe they’ll be removed from the church for allegations of sexual misconduct. Some archdioceses will list the names of the dismissed clergy on the church’s website for purposes of transparency, while others maintain an internal list of names.
Regardless of internal investigations, most known cases of sexual abuse are criminally investigated and prosecuted when enough evidence exists. Civil remedies are available in most circumstances, although the process must begin as soon as possible, so CHASENBOSCOLO can begin their investigation.
How to Prove Cases of Church Sex Abuse
Of all cases in tort law, proving clergypersons participated in the sexual abuse of a minor child or adult poses significant challenges when a victim decides to fight these cases alone. The elements required are similar to personal injury law: proving a duty to care, breach of duty, causation, and damages. Additionally, in church abuse cases, we may need to locate evidence of:
- Psychological damage as reported to an accredited psychologist
- Medical bills that are directly related to abuse
- Conversations (email, text, or phone calls) that prove communication between the victim and the alleged assailant
- Reprimands, statements, and audio conversations that the archdiocese or church’s head pastor may have
- Audio from confession booths, if it exists
- Any video or audio that illustrates the advances of the alleged assailant
- Witnesses who may have overhead clergy discussing their actions with others or those with intimate knowledge of the victim’s pain and suffering
Discuss your case with CHASENBOSCOLO during a free consultation to determine what recourse you may have if you were sexually abused by a church or nunnery official.
Compensation in Church Sexual Abuse Cases
Normal personal injury suits have a statute of limitations that dictate how long injured persons have to file a civil suit. With church sexual abuse cases, there will typically be a civil and a criminal side. The statute of limitations on civil claims of sexual abuse are state specific. In Maryland, child sexual abuse cases must be filed within seven years of the victim’s 18th birthday. Adult cases must be filed within three years of the underlying incident.
Compensation will be based on pain and suffering, psychological bills accrued to help cope with the sexual abuse, any medical bills that were the result of the sexual abuse, and any other damages deemed appropriate in accordance with law.
Contact a Church Sexual Abuse Attorney
The emotional and physical pain you’ve endured as a sexual abuse victim is unimaginable. CHASENBOSCOLO was formed by caring, aggressive attorneys who want nothing more than to help victims of sexual abuse get the justice they deserve. We help our clients seek compensation from the church they once trusted.
Money alone can’t make up for the horrible events sex abuse victims endured, but it can help victims find some semblance of peace as they work toward closure. We work hard to get every dime you deserve in these difficult circumstances.
Call us today at (301) 220-0050 or fill out a confidential online contact form to discuss your case in confidence with an attorney who is ready to help hold clergypersons or nuns accountable for direct sexual abuse or their role in helping to create an environment where the crime is tolerated. Consultations are free, and if we take your case, you won’t pay us anything until you win.