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Birmingham Personal Injury Attorneys > Blog > Sexual Assault > Sexual Assault And Civil Liability Considerations

Sexual Assault And Civil Liability Considerations


Sexual abuse and sexual assault can be devastating.  For victims, it can be difficult to return to ordinary life activities including the workplace. Sexual assaults and/or abuse occur more often that one might suspect, involving large percentages of the American population that are affected. According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC), about 1 out of every 5 women is the victim of rape or an attempted rape, and more than 80 percent of women report that they have experienced sexual harassment or assault. Men are also harmed by sexual violence, and more than 40 percent of men report that they have been the victims of sexual harassment or assault at some point.

While state and federal level criminal prosecution often focuses on holding the wrongdoer responsible for his or her actions, it is important for survivors of sexual assault to know that they may also have a civil claim against one or more parties. Who can be liable for sexual assault through a civil lawsuit? Our compassionate and dedicated Birmingham sexual assault attorneys can provide you with more information.

Perpetrator of the Sexual Assault 

You may be able to file a civil lawsuit against the perpetrator of the sexual assault. You may be eligible to file an intentional tort claim against the perpetrator, which is separate from any type of criminal case against that person. It is important to know that you can file a civil lawsuit regardless of the outcome of a criminal case. Accordingly, even if a person is found “not guilty” criminally, that person can still be found responsible for damages in a civil case.

Owner of the Property Where the Sexual Assault Occurred 

If a sexual assault occurred on premises where negligent security contributed to or allowed for the assault, it may be possible to file a negligent security claim against the owner of the property. This is a type of premises liability lawsuit.

Employer of the Perpetrator 

Depending upon the circumstances, the employer of the perpetrator could also be civilly liable for sexual assault committed by the employee. In particular, in circumstances where a sexual assault occurred in the workplace and the employer failed to take steps to prevent sexual harassment and assault or failed to respond to allegations of sexual harassment in the workplace, the victim of the assault may be able to sue the employer. There may be other circumstances, as well, where an employer is liable for a sexual assault committed by an employee while that employee was working.

Contact Our Birmingham Sexual Assault Lawyers for More Information 

If you or someone you love experienced sexual assault, we know how difficult it can be to recover both physically and emotionally. Although it may feel difficult to consider the possibility of a civil claim, it is important to know that, by filing a civil lawsuit, you may be able to obtain compensation for losses while holding the wrongdoer accountable. An experienced Birmingham sexual assault attorney at our firm can speak with you today about your case. Contact Goldasich, Vick & Fulk today for more information about how we assist clients who have suffered serious injuries and wrongdoing due to sexual assault.

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