Sexual Assault Victims: Support Systems and Recovery Pathways

Speak with a trusted Gwinnett County Juvenile Court lawyer in Georgia.

Philip Kim Law, P.C. provides compassionate and comprehensive legal support for persons affected by sexual assault. Learn how our attorneys can help you seek justice and compensation.

 

Author: Philip Kim, Founder, Philip Kim Law, P.C.

Defense lawyer Philip Kim has committed his career to standing up for the accused, and protecting the rights and reputations of his valued clients. If you face criminal charges in Georgia, we can provide you with the skilled, effective defense representation you need.

Published on June 26, 2024.

 

Getting Compensation After a Sexual Assault 

Sexual assault refers to any sexual activity where consent is not freely given. This can include a wide range of unwanted behaviors that violate an individual’s sexual integrity and autonomy. It is a serious crime that affects individuals of every age, gender, ethnicity, and socioeconomic background, leaving deep emotional and physical scars.

Every 68 seconds, someone in the U.S. is sexually assaulted. The widespread nature of this crime highlights the need for informed legal support to help persons navigate the complex emotions and judicial processes they face in the aftermath.

In the aftermath of a sexual assault, the offender may face criminal charges and penalties if convicted. However, many victims are unaware of their right to seek financial compensation or damages from anyone who is found responsible for the harm they suffered, which is totally independent of the criminal case. That’s where we come in at Philip Kim Law, P. C. 

Based in Lawrenceville, Gwinnett County, and serving North Metro Atlanta, we are expanding our services to include personal injury to support those affected by sexual assault. With our deep understanding of the challenges faced by these individuals, we are committed to providing compassionate and comprehensive legal assistance. Our goal is to help sexually assaulted persons seek justice and begin the healing process, ensuring that every voice is heard and treated with the utmost respect and attention.

Understanding Sexual Assault

Sexual assault is a severe violation that occurs in very personal settings. In Georgia, the law recognizes sexual assault as any unwanted sexual act, from inappropriate touching to rape.

Sexual assault can take many forms, including physical violence, coercion, or manipulation. This kind of violation can lead to serious psychological issues, such as PTSD, depression, and anxiety. Sexually assaulted persons often deal with feelings of shame and confusion, feeling alone while trying to cope with their experiences.

 Some common types of sexual assault include:

  • Rape
  • Attempted rape
  • Fondling
  • Sexual harassment
  • Incest

Each case of sexual assault is a serious breach of trust and personal autonomy. At Philip Kim Law, P.C., we understand the importance of addressing these breaches with the utmost seriousness and dedication. Our goal is to ensure that sexually assaulted persons are not only heard but also supported through the legal process. We focus on providing the necessary legal representation to help them recover their rights and seek justice. Our team is committed to guiding each client with sensitivity and dedication, helping to restore their confidence in the legal system, and supporting their journey towards recovery.

Legal Rights of Sexually Assaulted Persons

If you experience a sexual assault, it can feel like your world has been completely disrupted. Fortunately, there are legal options available to support your recovery and pursuit of justice. In Georgia, the law respects and protects the dignity and rights of sexually assaulted persons.

Every sexually assaulted person has the right to seek justice. While the legal process can seem overwhelming, there are resources available to help with related expenses.

After an assault, financial concerns such as medical bills and lost wages can add to the stress. The state of Georgia provides financial aid to help manage these expenses. When other resources are depleted, the Georgia Crime Victims Compensation Program can offer up to $25,000 in financial assistance for various costs resulting from the crime. However, it’s important to note that this assistance comes with specific eligibility criteria and limits on the amounts for different types of expenses. 

Victims can also file a civil lawsuit against the perpetrator or anyone else who might be responsible for the assault by their actions or omissions. The timeline for taking legal action, known as the statute of limitations, varies depending on the specifics of the case. In Georgia, the statute of limitations can be extended, especially if the sexually assaulted person was a minor at the time of the incident.

The right to file a civil claim in cases of sexual assault is important because while sexually assaulted persons can report the crime, the decision to prosecute is made by prosecutors based on the evidence. Not all cases lead to prosecution. Fortunately, civil claims are independent of criminal cases, even though the facts of both cases may have arisen from the same incident. In the event that the law enforcement authorities decide not to prosecute a sexual assault case, perhaps due to insufficient evidence, the victim can still get justice from their civil case, especially since the legal standard of proof in civil cases is lower. 

By understanding your legal rights and the available resources, you can make better decisions on your road to recovery. The journey may be tough, but you are not alone. Philip Kim Law, P.C. is dedicated to ensuring that sexually assaulted persons receive the full protection and support that the law provides.

Steps to Take After an Assault

Surviving a sexual assault is deeply traumatic, and the actions you take immediately afterwards are crucial to your recovery and legal rights. Here are some important steps to follow:

Seek Medical Attention:

  • Visit the nearest hospital or clinic as soon as possible.
  • Ask for a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) if one is available. These professionals are trained to handle such situations with care and can collect crucial evidence while looking after your health.
  • Even if you don’t have visible injuries, it’s important to check for internal trauma, sexually transmitted infections (STIs), or pregnancy.

Preserve Evidence:

  • Avoid bathing, showering, or changing your clothes to preserve evidence.
  • Keep any clothing or objects from the scene untouched if possible.

Report the Assault:

  • You have the option to report the assault to law enforcement.
  • It’s entirely your choice to make this report, and you can have a trusted person accompany you during this process.

Seek Legal Assistance:

Consider consulting a lawyer who understands the sensitivity of these cases. At Philip Kim Law, P.C., we understand the criminal and civil aspects of sexual assault cases and can provide legal guidance to help protect your rights throughout the complex legal process.

Restraining Orders and Protective Measures:

  • If you feel threatened, you may need to consider protective measures like a restraining order.
  • We can help explain how to obtain a restraining order in Georgia and assist with the legal paperwork.

Taking these steps can significantly aid in your healing process and the pursuit of justice. Remember, you do not have to go through this alone; there are professionals ready to support you every step of the way.

Contact Philip Kim Law, P.C. Today

Staying silent isn’t always the best option when justice requires you to speak up. At Philip Kim Law, P.C., we understand the serious impact of sexual assault on those affected and are committed to supporting those who feel powerless.

Sexually assaulted persons often face a complex legal system, and we are here to provide experienced guidance at every step. We recognize that every case is unique, and our approach is tailored to the individual stories of our clients. We prioritize personalized care, ensuring each affected person is treated with empathy and respect.

You don’t have to suffer in silence when you have the right to be heard. We encourage sexually assaulted persons to pursue the justice they deserve. Recovery can be tough, but it’s easier with the right legal support.

For a private consultation, contact us today. Let us help you regain your voice and your rights.

Request a Free Legal Consultation

Philip Kim Law, P.C.
368 West Pike Street, Suite 203
Lawrenceville, GA 30046
(678) 203-6968
Fax: (678) 273-3501
kim map