If you have suffered sexual assault in any way, our team is here for you. Our sexual assault lawyers will approach your case with compassion and trust. For over 20 years, we have been dedicated to fighting for victims.
No one can understand the effects of sexual assault until they’ve lived it. At John Foy & Associates, we’re here to help you build a case for what you deserve. We never charge a fee unless we win you compensation, and the consultation is always free. To get a free consultation today, call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online.
Financial Recovery After Sexual Assault
According to RAINN (Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network), the recovery process after a sexual assault is different for everyone. It can take anywhere from weeks to a lifetime to heal.
A personal injury case for sexual assault can bring up intense emotions. While the legal process seeks justice, it can be a lot for the victim to relive. That’s why it’s crucial to work with a lawyer who understands these cases’ sensitive nature.
Sexual assault cases are about more than the money. They fight for the victim’s right to fairness and dignity. The offender should pay for the short- and long-term damage they have caused.
If you or a loved one were victims, reach out to us today. Our kind and knowledgeable lawyers will listen to your story and help you take the next steps forward.
Why Do I Need an Experienced Premises Liability Lawyer for My Sexual Assault Case?
A lawyer can hold a property owner or business responsible for a sexual assault on their premises. Premises liability lawyers help build injury claims to recover financial compensation.
Many times, inadequate security contributes to sexual assault on someone else’s property. If that’s the case with your assault, you have rights.
An experienced lawyer can help you:
- Gathering evidence of the property owner’s negligence
- Show that the owner knew or should have known about the risks of assault
- Document your damages from the incident
- Building a strong premises liability claim
Your lawyer can also protect your rights. The insurance company will look for ways to reduce what they pay you. A premises liability lawyer knows how to communicate and negotiate with insurers. They’ll fight for the total compensation you deserve.
The property owner or business will probably look for ways to avoid liability. A lawyer can help preserve evidence and show how the owner was careless. An experienced attorney will provide the best chance of a successful case.
If you were the victim of sexual assault, contact a premises liability lawyer today. Our team has experience with sexual assault cases on other people’s properties. We’ll make sure you file your claim before it’s too late.
How Does Premises Liability Law Affect Sexual Assault Cases in Georgia?
Premises liability law allows sexual assault victims to bring third-party claims.
Of course, the person who assaulted the victim is primarily at fault. But a property owner or company could also be negligent in what happened.
Property owners must ensure their premises are safe for visitors, according to the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA) §51-3-1. If a property is not secure and an assault happens, the owner could be liable. The owner failed in their duty to protect people on their property.
Through a premises liability claim, a victim can show that:
- The property owner knew (or should have known) about the risk of assaults on the property.
- The property owner didn’t take the necessary safety precautions to protect the victim.
- As a result, the victim was assaulted and suffered damages.
Suing the perpetrator helps the victim seek justice. However, a third-party claim is often the best way to get financial compensation. A victim can file a claim to recover damages from what they’ve suffered.
Damages can include:
- Medical bills
- Prescription drug costs
- Mental health counseling
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Sexual assaults can affect survivors in many ways. They often suffer mental and emotional trauma on top of financial losses. Premises liability law provides another way for victims to seek justice and compensation.
Who Can I Sue for a Premises Liability Sexual Assault Case?
Victims of sexual assault might sue a property owner or business for damages. If a property owner’s negligence contributed to your assault, you can likely sue.
Premises liability cases are about a property owner’s duty of care. Property owners and occupiers should maintain safe premises. They should make sure the property is safe for those who come onto it legally.
Poor security and safety measures increase the risk of injuries or attacks on the property. Parties that you might sue for a sexual assault include:
- Property owners
- School administrators
- Church leaders
- Hotels or motels
To bring a lawsuit, you must build a premises liability case. Your case should show how and why the party is liable for your assault damages.
Duty of Care
Property owners owe a duty of care to certain people who come onto their property. If you fall under the category of “invitee,” the property owner has a responsibility to keep the area safe for you.
A lawyer can help you prove the party’s duty of care to you.
The party must also have been aware of the risk. For example, maybe there were many sexual assaults or other crimes committed near the property. Despite that, the property owner didn’t take action to make the area safer.
There must have been a way for the at-fault party to know that there was a risk. Thankfully, an experienced premises liability lawyer can help prove this point.
Who Is Liable for the Duty of Care for Safety and Security?
Property owners have a duty of care to those who come onto their property. They must provide reasonable safety and security to prevent accidents.
If injuries happen due to a lack of security, the property owner or business can be liable. In some cases, employers can also be responsible for incidents like sexual assault.
The duty of care will depend on the property and conditions. Property owners might need to provide security like:
- Better door and window locks
- Security guards
- Property training for security personnel
- Security cameras
- Regular landscape maintenance
Even poor property maintenance can increase the risk of dangers. Assaults are more likely to happen at properties that look rundown.
Potential risks in the area also influence the duty of care. If there is a history of sexual assault in an area, property owners should be aware. They must take specific safety measures to protect those on their property.
If you or a loved one were the victims of sexual assault, you have rights. A property owner or company could be liable for failing in their duty of care. Of course, you have grounds to take legal action against the person who assaulted you.
But you might also have a valid premises liability claim against the owner of the property.
How Is Liability Proven for Negligent Security in a Sexual Assault Case?
There are several steps to proving that negligent security contributed to sexual assault.
Here’s how it works:
Investigating the Assault
First, you’ll need to collect evidence from the assault. For many survivors, reliving the incident is incredibly challenging. Victims can work with a sexual assault lawyer to help build a case for themselves.
A lawyer can help by:
- Looking into security measures on the property where the assault occurred
- Gathering evidence that the property owner or business was negligent
- Collecting proof of your damages
- Protecting your rights
Your lawyer can determine if you have a valid claim. If the property owner was negligent in some way, they’re likely liable for your damages.
You will need to know all of your damages resulting from the assault. Sexual assault survivors often have significant emotional injuries.
You will need to know all of the losses you have before holding the property owner liable.
Filing the Claim
Property owners should carry insurance that pays for injuries on their premises. Those injuries can include assaults.
After building your claim, your lawyer will send a demand letter to the insurance company. From there, the insurer will probably respond with a lowball offer.
Your lawyer will work to negotiate for a fair settlement offer. If you cannot settle, you might decide to file a lawsuit to hold the property owner liable.
How Is Breach of Duty Established in a Sexual Assault Case?
A lawyer will establish a breach of duty by gathering evidence. They’ll work to show that a property owner was negligent (or careless) and contributed to your sexual assault.
All property owners have a duty of care. If an owner is careless towards visitors, they may breach their duty.
After a sexual assault, you might have a claim against the property owner for failing to keep you safe. A successful case should prove that the party breached its duty of care to you.
Breach of duty is just one part of a negligence claim. You must prove these four points:
- The property owner owed you a duty of care.
- The owner breached their duty of care.
- The breached duty led to the sexual assault.
- You suffered injuries and damages.
The person who assaulted you is primarily at fault. However, property owners and businesses can also be liable. You could have a premises liability claim against the owner of the property where you were harmed,
Sexual assaults often happen because of poor security. If a property owner failed to provide property security or safety measures, they breached their duty of care.
Your lawyer can help gather evidence to show how a property owner’s actions led to your assault and damages.
How Is Causation Established to Prove Negligent Security in a Sexual Assault Case?
Like breach of duty, causation is shown through evidence. You’ll need to prove that:
- A property owner provided negligent security on their property.
- The owner owed you a duty of care to keep their premises safe.
- The owner’s failure to provide security contributed to your sexual assault.
“Causation” means someone’s actions caused your injuries. Under Georgia law, there must be causation to bring a legal case. It’s not enough to say that a property owner or business should pay for your damages.
A lawyer will establish causation in two parts:
- “Cause in fact”
- “Proximate cause”
Cause in fact means the sexual assault wouldn’t have happened if the property owner had been more careful. Property owners should know their duty of care to visitors. By failing to provide security, a property owner might have contributed to a sexual assault.
Proximate cause is also known as “foreseeability.” In other words, the property owner must have known there was a reason to have safer security. Or, the property owner should have known about the risks.
You’ll need to gather evidence of both to provide causation in a sexual assault case. An experienced sexual assault lawyer can help you build a strong claim with these elements.
What Damages Can I Recover for a Negligent Security Sexual Assault Case?
You can recover any damages that result from the sexual assault. Here are some examples.
You will need to see a doctor after a sexual assault. If you have severe injuries, you might need costly or long-term treatment.
Your case can include:
- Doctor bills
- Hospital bills
- Prescription drug costs
- Physical therapy
- Psychological counseling
Be sure to complete any treatment before filing your case. You’ll want to know all of your medical expenses first. Your lawyer can help predict what any future costs will be.
Sexual assaults are incredibly serious. They can take an enormous toll on a victim’s entire life, including their ability to work.
If you have to miss work time, you can claim those lost wages. You can also include lost earning potential if you cannot work as you could before.
Pain and Suffering
The emotional effects of sexual assault can last a lifetime. Pain and suffering damages allow you to recover money for mental and emotional suffering.
Non-economic damages are complicated to calculate. Thankfully, your lawyer will use a formula to put a dollar value on these losses.
If a property owner or business was negligent in your assault, you have rights. You might have a personal injury case against the owner or company. Your claim or lawsuit may include all of the damages you’ve suffered because of the assault.
Will My Negligent Security Sexual Assault Case Settle Out of Court?
Most cases settle outside of court. You can seek a settlement through a personal injury claim against a property owner for negligent security. If you can settle, you won’t have to go to trial.
However, insurance companies don’t like to pay much on injury claims. You will probably need to negotiate with the insurer for a chance at a fair settlement. An experienced sexual assault lawyer can help fight for what you deserve.
There are situations where it’s better to go to court. For example, maybe you have significant damages, but the insurance company won’t budge. It might be worth it to file a lawsuit and seek compensation.
Claims vs. Lawsuits
Most of the time, a personal injury claim is the best option. Lawsuits are lengthy and expensive. They can also be emotionally taxing for sexual assault survivors.
When you file an insurance claim, there’s a much lower risk. If you get a settlement offer, that’s guaranteed compensation. But with a trial, you’ll either win everything you deserve or nothing. If you do win, your compensation will be much higher.
It’s best to weigh the pros and cons with your lawyer. If you have a strong case, filing a lawsuit might be worth it. However, most cases can settle without going to court.
What Is the Average Settlement for Premises Liability Sexual Assault Case?
Every premises liability case is different, so your settlement will depend on the details. However, sexual assault cases tend to involve a lot of pain and suffering damages, which can be worth a lot.
Instead of looking for an average, it’s best to speak with an experienced lawyer. A personal injury lawyer who specializes in premises liability sexual assault cases can help. They’ll determine what type of compensation you can expect.
Determining Your Damages
Any injury case depends on your personal injury damages.
Your damages are the financial and non-financial losses you have from the assault. Sexual assault cases are complicated, so the damages can look different for each victim.
Your damages might include:
- Medical bills
- Prescription drug costs
- Mental health counseling costs
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning potential
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
Your lawyer can help calculate each of your damages. Then, they’ll create a demand letter to send to the at-fault party’s insurance company. The at-fault party is usually a property owner or business where the assault happened.
Your settlement also probably depends on your legal team. After you file a claim, the property owner and their insurance company may fight back. They will look for ways to avoid liability for what happened.
An experienced lawyer will know what to do. Your attorney can negotiate with the insurance company for a fair settlement offer. If all goes well, you can agree to an amount that works for both parties.
How Long Do I Have to File a Premises Liability Sexual Assault Lawsuit?
You typically have two years to file a lawsuit for sexual assault on someone else’s property. If you miss this deadline, you might be unable to recover any compensation.
A victim usually has four years to bring a sexual assault case against an assailant. But you might also have a legal claim against the owner of the property where you were assaulted.
A premises liability claim seeks compensation from the property owner or business. Your case must prove that:
- The property owner had a duty to keep you safe.
- The property owner failed in their duty.
- Because of the property owner’s carelessness, you suffered harm.
- You have damages resulting from the assault.
A property owner or business might owe you damages for what you’ve suffered. For example, you may have medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering.
But you must file your claim within the deadline. Otherwise, you will miss your chance at recovering what you deserve. The courts will typically throw out any case that has passed the statute of limitations in Georgia.
You will need time to gather evidence and build your case. Thankfully, an experienced lawyer can help. Talk to a lawyer today about the ideal timeline and how to get started.
Get a Free Consultation with a Sexual Assault Lawyer Today
If you or a loved one were victims of sexual assault, call us today. At John Foy & Associates, we know how to help you seek the justice you deserve. We’ve been helping those harmed by others’ actions for over 20 years.
Call us at (404) 400-4000 or contact us online for a free, no-risk consultation.