Sexual assault victims in Mobile, AL have the right to seek damages for their injuries from the perpetrator and any other liable parties. This is true even if your attacker is not convicted or even charged.
At Lattof & Lattof, P.C., we represent victims in seeking fair financial compensation and justice for their injuries. Contact us today to speak with an experienced Mobile sexual assault lawyer to learn more about your legal rights as an assault victim.
How Lattof & Lattof, P.C. Helps Sexual Assault Victims
Sexual assault is a frightening and traumatic crime that can leave you feeling overwhelmed. The experience may be made worse if you are facing the financial burden of taking time off work and seeking medical care for your injuries. While a criminal case may help you find justice and security, it doesn’t help with the very real financial hardship you face.
At Lattof & Lattof, P.C., our Mobile personal injury lawyers represent survivors of sexual assault in seeking justice and holding their attacker accountable through the civil court system. We help you seek fair compensation to pay for counseling, medical care, and lost wages as you move forward with your life.
Our focus is on you and your recovery, not punishment for the perpetrator. Lattof & Lattof, P.C. has represented personal injury victims for more than 65 years as a family-run law firm. We bring a combined century of experience in serving as your legal advocate.
Our firm believes that trust and strong communication are crucial to any personal injury case. You can always depend on open, honest communication to give you the guidance and support you need going forward.
We regularly secure high-value settlements and jury verdicts for our clients. Our compassionate Mobile sexual assault lawyers are here to help you.
What Is Sexual Assault in Alabama?
In Alabama, charges involving any type of sexual abuse usually involve unlawful “sexual contact.” This refers to touching another person’s sexual organs for their own gratification or being touched by someone else.
There are several forms of sexual abuse in Alabama. Common charges include:
- First-degree sexual abuse under Criminal Code 13A-6-66. This involves forceful sexual contact against the other person’s will. It may include oral sex, rape, or fondling. It includes situations in which a victim could not consent due to mental or physical incapacitation.
- Second-degree sexual abuse under Criminal Code 13A-6-67. This charge is filed against someone 19 or older who subjects someone 12-16 to sexual contact. This is also known as statutory rape.
- Sexual torture under Criminal Code 13A-6-65. This can include penetrating the mouth, anus, or vagina of someone else with an inanimate object by force or against someone who cannot consent.
If you have been the victim of sexual abuse, your attacker may or may not be arrested and prosecuted for one of these charges. Even if this does not happen, you may have the right to seek compensation through a civil claim. An experienced Mobile sexual assault injury lawyer at Lattof & Lattof, P.C. can help you explore legal options.
Sexual Assault Statistics in Mobile
Unwanted sexual touching, sexual assault, and other sexual crimes are shockingly common in Alabama and the rest of the country. Alabama has the 20th highest rate of forcible rape in the U.S. and 1 out of every 6 women in America has been the victim of attempted or completed rape. Sexual assault in all of its forms is a horrific crime that affects both men and women.
Victims of sexual assault may face life-changing injuries. Along with physical injuries, you may struggle with psychological and emotional effects from your assault. As the victim of sexual assault, you do not need to face this burden alone.
It’s estimated that just 32-39% of rapes are reported to law enforcement. In 80% of cases, the victim knew the offender. About 23% of victims of sexual assault in Alabama were 13 to 16 years old, according to RAINN.
Nationwide, 54% of sexual assault victims are 18 to 34 years old. About 90% of adult assault victims are female, but men also face rape and sexual assault. About 10% of rape victims are male.
In 2017 alone, there were 17,760 cases of rape reported to police in Alabama. That makes sexual assault the most common form of violent crime in the state. Rape and sexual assault appears on the rise in the state: in 2014, there were 12,987 reported cases.
Criminal vs. Civil Sexual Assault Cases in Mobile
If you have sustained injuries due to a sexual assault, it’s important to understand the difference between criminal and civil charges in Alabama. After reporting the assault to the police, criminal charges may be filed against your attacker. You will need to pursue a civil lawsuit against your attacker to recover compensation for the harm you have suffered.
It’s common for two separate legal proceedings to occur in cases of sexual assault or abuse. The criminal case will require the prosecution to prove the defendant committed the crime. If convicted or pleading guilty, your attacker will be sentenced. This criminal case only focuses on a punishment for the perpetrator.
A civil personal injury lawsuit against the person who abused or attacked you allows you to not only seek justice but potentially recover compensation. While financial compensation can’t erase the trauma, it can help you seek the medical care and counseling you deserve without a financial burden.
Civil sexual assault injury claims in Alabama are completely separate from criminal cases. There is also a lower burden of proof. Even if the perpetrator is not charged or convicted, you may still recover damages for the harm you suffered.
Sexual Assault and Premises Liability
Some cases of sexual assault in Mobile involve an area of law called premises liability. Under this doctrine, property owners have a duty to provide adequate security and safety to customers and visitors. If a property owner’s negligence and inadequate security contributed to your sexual assault, they may be held financially responsible for the consequences.
To prove a premises liability case, you will need to show that the property owner owed you a duty of care, breached this care, and your assault occurred because of the breach of care. If a sexual assault occurred at a hotel or apartment building, for example, the owner or manager may share liability if the assault occurred because of inadequate lighting or broken locks.
Do you believe your assault happened because a property owner failed to mitigate a foreseeable risk or address security issues? Our Alabama sexual abuse attorneys will investigate your case to determine if it falls under premises liability law.
Common Sexual Assault Injuries in Mobile
Rape or sexual assault can be not only physically traumatic but also leave victims with emotional and psychological harm. Some sexual assault survivors face life-long injuries from their assault. At Lattof & Lattof, P.C., we help sexual assault victims who have suffered injuries such as:
- Injuries from foreign objects
- Injuries from force
- Sexually transmitted diseases
- Unwanted pregnancy
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Sexual assault leaves more than just physical injuries. The Mobile sexual assault injury lawyers at Lattof & Lattof, P.C. understand that your assault may change the course of your life and leave invisible wounds. Our family-run law firm has over 65 years of experience helping injury victims heal by seeking justice and fair compensation.
Compensation for Sexual Assault in Mobile
Under Alabama personal injury law, sexual assault victims have the right to hold the perpetrator liable for the harm they have caused. A personal injury lawsuit offers a legal avenue for recovering financial compensation to pay for your medical treatment, counseling, time off work, and the mental anguish you have suffered.
There are two broad types of damages you may be entitled to in your claim: compensatory or economic damages and non-compensatory damages.
Compensatory damages compensate you for the economic damages you have suffered such as medical expenses and lost income. Depending on the extent of your injuries, you may be facing long-term medical costs and reduced earning capacity.
Non-compensatory damages refer to non-economic damages you have suffered. This may include loss of enjoyment of life, pain and suffering, and mental anguish.
You may also be entitled to punitive damages if your case goes to court. Punitive damages are uncommon but they are designed to punish someone for deliberate acts of malice, cruelty, or oppression.
Contact Our Compassionate Mobile Sexual Assault Lawyers Today
Have you been the victim of sexual assault in Mobile, Alabama? You do not need to face your perpetrator, insurance companies, and the court process alone in seeking the compensation you deserve. The caring legal team at Lattof & Lattof, P.C. will be with you every step to fight for maximum compensation for the serious injuries you have suffered.
We are here to serve as your support team and give you the sound legal representation you need. Contact a Mobile sexual assault lawyer at our law office today to schedule your free consultation.