We are child sexual abuse attorneys in Abbeville, SC. If you or your child have been harmed by sexual abuse, the impact may last for a lifetime. Hite Law Firm Trial Lawyers is a legal team that advocates for children. Our team can represent you in a legal claim that can provide justice and accountability.
Our child sexual abuse attorneys work to repair lives. With roots in the Abbeville, SC, community, we are proud to represent the most vulnerable among us. To discuss your situation with our professional and compassionate team of child abuse lawyers, reach out in any way you feel comfortable. Call us or message us online to begin.
Legal Help for Child Sexual Abuse in South Carolina
If you are the victim of child sexual abuse in South Carolina, the team at Hite Law Firm wants to help you. You may receive compensation for physical injury, pain and suffering, treatment, therapy, and other ways you are impacted by the abuse. With extensive experience representing abused children, we are ready to pursue accountability for those responsible and healing for you.
Here is what we want you to know about child sexual abuse and your legal rights:
Children cannot consent.
In South Carolina, children are unable to consent to sexual activity. S.C. Code § 16-3-655 criminalizes sexual conduct with a minor, saying that a child under the age of 16 is incapable of consenting to sexual activity. Numerous South Carolina courts have affirmed that consent of the victim is not a defense to liability for sexual assault. (See Doe Roe v. Orangeburg County School District, No. 24964 (1999), Doe v. Greenville Hospital System, 323 S.C. 33 (Ct. App. 1994).
You can bring a civil case.
There may be criminal charges brought against the offender. If convicted, an offender may serve a significant prison sentence. However, you may bring a civil case, too. A civil case is different in several ways.
Some of the key differences are that the victim initiates the case themselves, and they remain in control of decisions and the direction of the case. In addition, the burden of proof is lower in a civil case – even if the offender is never held accountable criminally, they may still be held liable through a civil action. In addition, a civil action may result in financial compensation for the victim.
Organizations that protect offenders may be held liable.
Sadly, sexual abuse is allowed to thrive because of the institutions that protect offenders. Sometimes these institutions do not supervise their employees. Sometimes they do not do an adequate background check. Sometimes they ignore red flags and complaints from clients, other students, or other employees about inappropriate conduct by the abuser. Too many children are victimized because schools, groups, and organizations fail to protect the vulnerable. These organizations sometimes blame victims, hide evidence and do everything they can to avoid accountability.
These organizations can be made to answer for their actions. They may be found liable for enabling abuse and be responsible to pay compensation.
Physical injuries are not required.
The scars of child sexual abuse are physical, mental, and emotional. It may change a victim’s home life, social relationships, employment, and the path of their entire future.
To have a claim for compensation, physical injuries are not required. Of course, many child sexual abuse victims are harmed physically, but it is not a requirement. A lack of physical injury is not determinative of whether sexual abuse occurred or whether the victim may bring a claim.
It may not be too late.
South Carolina law recognizes that child sexual abuse may be hard to process. Victims may not realize until later that they are a victim or how the abuse injured them. Lawmakers created an extended timeline for child sexual abuse cases. S.C. Code § 15-3-555 gives a victim until age 27 or three years after the discovery of the causal relationship between the injury and the abuse. A victim may refer to whichever situation occurs later. Because of this law, a child sexual abuse claim may proceed many years after the abuse occurred.
Our lawyers can represent you.
Hite Law Firm exists to help the most vulnerable in our society. Our child sexual abuse attorneys in Abbeville, SC, represent victims, handling everything needed to pursue your case. We understand the laws, how to bring claims, and the special care and attention needed to advocate for victims of child sexual abuse.
To see how we can help you, we invite you to contact our legal team to discuss your situation.
Holding Organizations Accountable for Child Sexual Abuse
There are many organizations that serve children, but hide, downplay, and/or enable child sexual abuse. Some of these organizations are:
- Public or private schools
- Daycares, preschools
- Churches, religious clubs
- Sports leagues and organizations
- Summer camps
- Group care facilities
- Civic groups and charities
- Hospitals and mental health facilities
Holding these organizations accountable is justice. They should be made to answer for their actions, whether it is negligent hiring and supervision, blaming the victim, minimizing the situation, or falsifying records. Our lawyers can build the case and pursue accountability for those responsible.
Hite Law Firm goes up against the powerful organizations that enable abuse and their teams of lawyers. We are aggressive litigators who stand with and advocate for victims.
Representing minors and adults suffering abuse as a child
Our law firm represents minors and adults who suffered abuse. A minor who is a victim needs special care to address their current and future needs. In regards for claims for adults, South Carolina law has a provision that allows for an extended statute of limitations for sexual abuse because sometimes it takes an adult time to recognize how the abuse that happened when they were a child has harmed them. We will fully represent your interests and work for justice.
Talk to a Lawyer – Consultations Available
If you or your child have been harmed by child sexual abuse, we invite you to contact our caring and professional team. Our lawyers are willing to discuss your situation, the options in front of you, and how we can help. It is our goal to advocate for your legal rights and hold offenders accountable.
Contact the Hite Law Firm child sexual abuse attorneys in Abbeville, SC, today.