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Columbus Sexual Assault Lawyers

Caring advocacy for victims of sexual assaults in Central Ohio

Anyone who commits sexual assault or abuse should be liable for these horrible offenses. In addition to criminal complaints, the people who commit these wrongs, and the organizations who foster these perpetrators, should be held liable in civil court. Acts of sexual abuse cause physical harm and immediately affect the ability of the victim to trust others. The psychological harm of a sexual assault or abuse often lasts for a lifetime.

At Soroka & Associates, LLC, our personal injury lawyers have the experience and resources to pursue sexual assault claims in court. We work with professionals who are trained at helping sexual assault victims obtain the counseling they need – including when the victims are children. We confidentially and compassionately represent children and adults so that the wrongdoers are held accountable. Our lawyers seek compensation for all your economic losses and your personal emotional suffering.

What conduct qualifies as sexual assault in Columbus?

Generally, a sexual assault is any non-consensual unwanted sexual contact – including threats or use of force.

Ohio has different definitions and different crimes for sexual assault. These definitions and crimes serve as a guide for a civil complaint, but they are not conclusive. It is not necessary to show a defendant committed or was charged with a sexual assault in order to file a civil complaint for sexual assault.

Soroka & Associates has experience representing victims of:

  • Rape
  • Sexual battery
  • Unlawful sexual conduct with a minor
  • Gross sexual imposition
  • Many other sexual offenses

What should I do if someone sexually assaults me or my child?

Our Columbus sexual assault lawyers recommend that victims and parents take the following steps, among others:

  • Find someplace safe. This place can be with a relative you trust or a local community shelter.
  • Obtain medical help. Victims should be examined by emergency rooms, their physicians, or other medical centers. The doctors and nurses at most hospitals and ER centers should be trained in collecting the proper physical evidence and responding to the initial immediate trauma of the assault.
  • Report the attack. The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network has a hotline that you can call. It does help to speak to someone familiar with sexual assault offenses that you feel comfortable talking to. It does help to have a record that you spoke with someone promptly.
  • Preserve any evidence. For example, store your clothes and any possessions you had with you at the time of the assault. They may provide critical evidence to support your complaint.
  • Call our law firm. Our lawyers will calmly answer your questions, help you see the doctors including sexual assault and rape counselors that you need to see, and explain your rights. We’ll also review when and how you should contact the police.

Who is liable for a sexual assault?

We file sexual assault complaints against the person who committed the assault. In addition to the attacker, the entities that had responsibility for supervising a child or an adult may be liable for a sexual assault of a child. These entities may include:

  • A property owner or operator
  • A local school district
  • Individual teachers and school administrators or staff members
  • A foster parent
  • Youth organizations
  • Social, sports, and religious organizations
  • People who are required to report sexual assaults and fail to do so
  • A nursing home may be liable if a staff member or employee sexually assaults a senior resident
  • Uber or Lyft may be liable if a driver sexually assaults a passenger

Other defendants may be liable depending on how and when the sexual assault happened.

What damages can I seek after a sexual assault?

At Soroka & Associates, we explain that the purpose of a criminal complaint is to ensure that justice is done – that the person who committed the assault has a criminal record and is punished for the sexual assault. The purpose of a civil complaint is to compensate you for your economic and human damages.

We coordinate your civil case with the criminal case. Typically, the criminal case proceeds first. A criminal conviction can often be decisive in determining liability in a civil case, but don’t lose heart if the criminal case does not go the way you’d hoped. Civil cases are very different, both in how they proceed and how evidence is presented.

Our Columbus sexual assault trial lawyers demand that wrongdoers pay the following damages:

  • Your medical bills including bills for counseling and psychological help
  • Your lost income including an inability to work in the future due to the trauma or PTSD
  • Your physical pain such as any broken bones, bruises, cuts, or any harm to your ability to have children
  • Your emotional suffering which is often overwhelming
  • Your loss of consortium with your spouse

How much time do I have to file a sexual assault civil claim in Columbus?

While most personal injury claims have a statute of limitations of two years, civil sexual assault claims do not. Sexual assaults, specifically ones committed by clergy, teachers, administrators, coaches, or a person of authority, have a different statute of limitations.

Pursuant to ORC 2305.111:

An action for assault or battery brought by a victim of childhood sexual abuse based on childhood sexual abuse, or an action brought by a victim of childhood sexual abuse asserting any claim resulting from childhood sexual abuse, shall be brought within twelve years after the cause of action accrues. For purposes of this section, a cause of action for assault or battery based on childhood sexual abuse, or a cause of action for a claim resulting from childhood sexual abuse, accrues upon the date on which the victim reaches the age of majority. If the defendant in an action brought by a victim of childhood sexual abuse asserting a claim resulting from childhood sexual abuse that occurs on or after August 3, 2006, has fraudulently concealed from the plaintiff facts that form the basis of the claim, the running of the limitations period with regard to that claim is tolled until the time when the plaintiff discovers or in the exercise of due diligence should have discovered those facts. (Emphasis added)

There are, however, exceptions to every rule.

We recommend that you don’t wait. The best results happen when victims contact us as soon as possible. The sooner you speak with us, the sooner we can answer all the questions that you are sure to have – and review exactly what happened. We’ll promptly investigate the case including reviewing your physical evidence and speaking to witnesses.

Our team will speak with your doctors and health professionals. We may refer you to health professionals we work with who are skilled in helping sexual assault victims. We’ll calmly and clearly explain how the civil process works, and how your case is coordinated with any criminal complaints.

Do you have a sexual assault lawyer near me?

The Columbus office of Soroka & Associates is located at 503 South Front Street, Suite 205. Our office is located near Rt. 23 and I-71. Please call us for directions. If you feel safer in your own home, we can travel to you.

Take control now and call our Columbus sexual assault lawyers today

Sexual assaults are inexcusable. If you are being assaulted by someone, that person may be sexually assaulting others too. Our lawyers are sensitive to your trauma. We understand just how devastating sexual assaults are. Victims often never fully recover. You do have the right to hold the people who caused or permitted the assault responsible. To discuss your rights and how the claims process works, call Soroka & Associates at 614-358-6525 or fill out our contact form to schedule a free consultation. If we accept your case, we will represent you on a contingency fee basis. This means that we get paid only if there is a monetary award on your behalf. We serve clients in Columbus and throughout Central Ohio, including in Licking County, Delaware County, Fairfield County, and beyond.