Help for survivors of
sexual abuse & assault

Missouri Sexual Assault Attorney

Someone is sexually assaulted in the United States every 68 seconds. Three-quarters of all sexual assault victims know their abusers. 93 percent of children who are sexually assaulted know their abusers. All too often, sexual assault occurs in the home or in other places we feel comfortable – nursing homes, hospitals, schools, churches, and youth organizations.

If you’ve been sexually assaulted in Missouri, contact DRZ Law Firm. The person who has abused you must be held accountable for the devastation they’ve caused, and our Missouri sexual assault attorneys are ready to make that happen for you.

Since 2013, we’ve been a fierce advocate for victims of sexual assault in Missouri, helping our clients stand up to powerful institutions and insurance companies. Our award-winning trial attorneys have helped them secure millions in settlements and verdicts in the process.

Don’t let your sexual abuser walk away without consequence. Contact our Missouri law office and schedule a free consultation. Discover why you’ll want our top-rated legal services in your corner for this fight.

What is Institutional Sexual Assault?

When a person in a position of power or authority sexually assaults someone who trusts them, it’s often referred to as “institutional” sexual assault. The abuser takes advantage of the relationship and pushes boundaries by forcing or pressuring the (often young) victim to engage in sexual activity.

You might be familiar with sexual assault cases involving the Catholic Church or the Boyscouts of America, both of which have made headlines in recent years. These are prime examples of institutional sexual assault – clergy and leaders abusing their position of power and preying on unassuming and trusting victims. Our child sexual abuse lawyers have extensive experience taking on institutions that have abused their authority and failed to protect the children.

Liability in Civil Missouri Sexual Assault Cases

As the victim of sexual assault, you can file a civil personal injury lawsuit against your abuser or anyone who may have contributed to your abuse.

So, depending on the circumstances, potential defendants in a sexual assault lawsuit could include:

There’s no specific cause of action for sexual assault, so most victims base their lawsuits on the torts of assault, battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and/or negligence.

Assault and battery claims are generally raised when the defendant in the lawsuit is the abuser. The sexual abuse victim has to prove that they were reasonably fearful of harmful or offensive contact or that they were actually touched in an offensive way. In other words, the defendant threatened to touch the plaintiff in a sexual manner or followed through and engaged in non-consensual sexual activity with the plaintiff.

Note that employers can be vicariously liable for civil sexual assault, meaning that they can be held accountable if their own negligence or intentional actions contributed to the sexual abuse or let it happen.

For instance, an athletic organization might be liable if a coach sexually assaults a player if the organization failed to screen coaches properly during the hiring process or turned a blind eye to other complaints about sexual abuse.

In Missouri, claims based on the intentional infliction of emotional distress can be successful when there’s evidence that the defendant engaged in extreme and outrageous conduct and “intentionally or recklessly cause[d] severe emotional distress that results in bodily harm.” Courts have held that engaging in sexual contact with a child is “unquestionably extreme and outrageous conduct.”

Sexual assault claims can be complicated. Our sexual assault lawyers in Missouri have extensive experience navigating the challenges that can pose and helping victims like you get the financial justice that’s deserved. We can help you bring a successful sexual assault claim, too. Give our law office in Missouri a call to learn more.

What Damages Are Available to Victims of Sexual Assault in Missouri?

Sexual assault lawsuits can help victims recover compensatory damages to offset financial costs and make up for the pain and suffering they experience. These are referred to as economic damages and non-economic damages, respectively.

Some damages that are commonly awarded in sexual assault cases include:

  • Current and future medical bills
  • Lost wages and income
  • Lost job benefits
  • Disability
  • Emotional distress, including depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Reduced quality of life
  • Loss of consortium
  • Damage to relationships
  • Scarring

Punitive damages may also be available in Missouri civil sexual assault lawsuits. The state provides that punitive damages can be awarded when the defendant acts intentionally or acts with “a deliberate and flagrant disregard for the safety of others.”

DRZ Law Firm will aggressively pursue all damages available to you under Missouri state law. We’ll work closely with experts to ensure that we fully appreciate how being sexually assaulted has affected – and will continue to affect – your life. The more evidence we have to work with, the better prepared we’ll be to maximize your financial recovery.

What’s the Time Limit For Filing a Civil Sexual Assault Claim in Missouri?

The state will have an unlimited amount of time to pursue criminal sexual assault charges against your attack. You, however, don’t have forever to take legal action. The statute of limitations – or time limit that applies to your case – will depend on the cause of action on which the claim is filed.

Sexual assault claims based on intentional actions like assault and battery must be filed within two years of the last date of the abuse. Claims based on negligence must be filed within five years.

You must file your claim before the deadline comes and goes. Once that happens, you’ll lose the right to seek financial compensation for the injuries, financial losses, and suffering you’ve been forced to endure.

Trusted Missouri Sexual Assault Attorneys Ready to Fight For You

Don’t let the person who sexually assaulted off the hook. Don’t let institutions who knew about the abuse or put you in a position where it could happen walk away without consequence. Contact DRZ Law Firm and discover how our Missouri sexual assault attorneys can help you fight for the accountability you deserve.

Money might not turn back the clock and take away the trauma you’ve experienced. But it can help to lift the financial burden you’ve been living with and provide a sense of justice – and maybe even of a bit of closure.

Contact our law office in Kansas City to arrange a free consultation. Our attorneys work on contingency, which means you pay nothing unless we win your sexual assault case. Get in touch to get started on your path forward today.

We are open and available during Covid-19 via Zoom/video chat or in-person. Contact us if you have any questions. Close