Philadelphia Sexual Assault Lawyer

Do you need help? Call Laffey Bucci D’Andrea Reich & Ryan for compassionate and empathetic legal guidance.

  • Home
  • Philadelphia Sexual Assault Lawyer

Philadelphia Sexual Assault Lawyer

Sexual assault is a big issue. The national non-profit, RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), contends that as many as 433,648 individuals aged 12 and up in our country are sexually abused each year. Data from the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office shows that its Family Violence & Sexual Assault Unit prosecutes around 2,000 sexual assault cases annually. If you’re one of those unfortunate victims, reach out to a Philadelphia sexual assault lawyer in our office.

While we don’t make decisions regarding criminal prosecutions of sexual predators, we do advocate for victims who’ve been subjected to unwanted and inappropriate treatment like rape, incest, molestation, and similar types of abuse. Pennsylvania law may allow you to file a civil lawsuit against the person who hurt you or your vulnerable family member or someone else whose actions led to you suffering harm.

A meeting with one of our compassionate attorneys is completely confidential and free, so reach out to our firm to schedule that consultation now. It’s the first step toward regaining control over your life once again.

What Qualifies as Sexual Abuse?

Any non-consensual sexual acts may qualify as a type of assault, including the following:

  • Sexual harassment
  • Rape (including statutory rape)
  • Electronic recording and dissemination of sexually explicit material of minors or adults (such as the creation of deep fake videos or revenge porn)
  • Sexual battery
  • Child sexual abuse

Also, the following Title IX violations, go against federal anti-discrimination laws and occur in a government-funded educational setting, may qualify as this, including:

  • Sexual assaults occurring on campus
  • Sex-based discriminatory treatment
  • Sexual harassment in an academic environment
  • Retaliation against those who make complaints about abuse

The list above isn’t exhaustive. So, definitely don’t feel you can only reach out to us if you’ve suffered sexually oriented mistreatment, including the Title IX violations above.

Where Do Sexual Assaults Most Commonly Happen?

This illicit action can occur almost anywhere. While situations like these can occur in someone’s home, attorneys like ours at Laffey Bucci D’Andrea Reich & Ryan regularly handle cases in which this unsolicited sexual contact occurred at:

The truth is that perpetrators of these acts seek out opportunities to take advantage of victims anywhere they can, so if there’s a window of time and space, if they’re intent on inflicting abuse, it’s, sadly, going to occur.

Who Commonly Perpetrates Sexual Assaults?

Over the years, our lawyers have represented clients who’ve been taken advantage of by the following individuals:

  • Pastors, priests, and other religious leaders
  • Teachers, professors, and other school administrators
  • Coaches
  • Customers
  • Nurses, doctors, and other healthcare providers
  • Work colleagues and supervisors, including service members
  • Babysitters
  • Police officers and prison guards
  • Camp counselors
  • Police and other members of law enforcement
  • Home services professionals (like plumbers and internet or cable installers)

If you’ve suffered what you deem to be inappropriate sexual contact while interacting with any of the individuals above or someone else, such as a caregiver or person in a position of authority, consider reaching out to our legal team to discuss it. We know how difficult it can be to re-open wounds you’ve sought so hard to mend, but doing so once more is necessary to seek justice for what you’ve been through and to ensure what someone did to you doesn’t repeat the same and hurt someone else.

Why Does This Unwanted Sexual Activity Occur?

Perpetrators see a window of opportunity to take advantage of others:

  • This may happen because they’re left to care for a child alone, they notice someone following a certain pattern when exiting an office building at night, or because a person is deaf or immobile, making it challenging for them to get attention or fight off the advances.
  • The targeted victims are in a position of vulnerability. This is often why this sexual abuse targets minors, those with mental or physical impairments, the incarcerated, the elderly, and employees, as they all may have certain limitations or be in a subservient role.

As you can likely tell, there’s no justification for this adverse treatment, whether it occurs for the reasons listed above or any others.

Steps To Take After a Sexual Assault

Traumatic situations like these often make it challenging to think clearly; thus, knowing what steps to take afterward can be hard to think of. Here’s what you should do, though:

  • Get to safety: Get as far away from your perpetrator as possible so that you’re not vulnerable to re-abuse.
  • Report what happened: Call the police to make a report of what you endured. This will allow them to launch an investigation and potentially hold the suspected abuser criminally liable for their actions.
  • Seek immediate medical care: You need to not only receive treatment for any physical injuries you suffered, but this also ensures you receive a rape kit (if appropriate), which can help confirm the identity of a suspect) and that you receive testing and medication for sexually transmitted diseases (if necessary). In other cases, the reports medical providers prepare can further prove what you were subjected to and the harm it caused you. Healthcare professionals at the hospital can also ensure law enforcement knows about what happened and refer you for mental health counseling.
  • Contact a Philadelphia sexual assault lawyer: This isn’t essential but is highly recommended. While law enforcement and prosecutors will take care of criminal proceedings, you may meet the requirements to file a civil lawsuit to recover monetary compensation for your losses. An attorney can help you do this.

Why Victims Often Delay Reporting the Mistreatment They Endured

Often, the abuse that victims have endured has long been left to fester. It’s not uncommon for those who were assaulted as children not to address that mistreatment until they’re adults. It may be some time after an adult is sexually abused before they come forward and say anything, or it becomes apparent to others. Why is this?

Depending on the ages of kids, they may not understand between right and wrong to know what happened shouldn’t have. By the time they understand that as teens or adults, this may be when they finally come forward and say something.

Some victims may have been told by perpetrators not to say anything. They may only gain the courage to do so through the encouragement of a mental health counselor because others step forward and make similar allegations against the person who hurt them or because their abuser becomes incarcerated or dies, for example.

While the thought of coming forward may seem crippling to you at this point, it’s the first step in the right direction to taking back your life and living it on your own terms. Reporting what happened is necessary so you can get the treatment you need to feel better and so the person who harmed you can be brought to justice.

Understanding the Impact Unwanted Sexual Contact Has on a Victim

Non-consensual sexual activity, however incidental it may seem to others, may have a significant adverse impact on victims’ lives. Victims are often at a higher risk for:

  • Mental health struggles: Depression leading to isolation, anxiety masquerading as fear, low self-esteem resulting in self-cutting or suicide, post-traumatic stress disorder, ease of anger, as well as guilt and shame commonly afflict sexual abuse victims.
  • Having trust issues: It’s not uncommon for those who have been sexually abused to struggle with trusting others, especially since many victims were once close with or held what became the perpetrator in high regard. However, that trust was eroded when they overstepped that boundary and took advantage of them. This newfound distrust can carry over into other relationships.
  • Substance abuse: Unaddressed mental health concerns can lead to victims turning to alcohol and drugs to help them block out the trauma of the sexual assault that they carry with them.
  • Obesity: Like drugs and alcohol, food may be what a victim turns to for comfort to help them cope with the myriad of emotions that the sexual abuse they endured. Also, those who’ve been abused may perceive their weight gain as making them less attractive to others who may seek to abuse them, thus protecting them from further mistreatment.

Treatment Options Exist for Those Who Have Been Sexually Assaulted

If you’ve suffered abuse, the most common approach used to deal with that treatment is mental health counseling. There are varying approaches used to treat depression, anxiety, guilt, shame, eating disorders, addiction, and other conditions that you’re struggling with.

Since many individuals who were assaulted were caught off guard by what happened and were expected to return to life as normal as if nothing bad ever happened, mental health therapists often find that the issue that’s most pressing for them is that they never finished processing the traumatic experience, which is necessary for it not to linger on as a nagging concern in their minds and lives.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) has been praised as helping those who’ve been sexually assaulted finish processing what they’ve been through, which can have tremendous positive implications for their overall mental health.

There are, of course, other treatment options that may be appropriate depending on what you have endured and your symptoms, so it’s certainly important for you to discuss those options with an addiction specialist, a mental health counselor, or a psychiatrist.

Recovering Compensation for What You Have Endured

Receiving mental health counseling and other treatments you may require to help you cope with your assault can be costly. Expenses associated with what you went through could be even higher if you received treatment in an emergency room, diagnostic testing, or needed to take time off from work after your traumatic experience.

Know that Pennsylvania law may allow you to recover compensation for all these above-referenced costs (and more) by filing a civil lawsuit against your abuser and anyone who played a role in allowing them to commit such acts.

It’s also important that you know that, like most other civil actions, there’s a statute of limitations, which is a filing deadline that applies to filing a lawsuit in cases like these. This is why it’s imperative that you reach out to a Philadelphia sexual assault lawyer to discuss the merits of your potential case as soon as possible. Doing so will ensure your abuser’s bad acts don’t go unpunished.

A consultation with one of our attorneys at Laffey Bucci D’Andrea Reich & Ryan is confidential and free. So, there’s no reason to not reach out to our law firm to find out what your rights are now. In addition to handling cases in Philadelphia, we also handle sexual assault cases throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

“Our trauma informed attorneys understand the painful emotions caused by sexual abuse. Fear, anger, shame and depression are all natural reactions that we empathize with. We are here to listen, believe you and see that justice is done. You deserve answers.”

Guy D’Andrea, Co-Managing Partner

  • $7.5 Million

    Against a correctional facility for negligently supervising a guard that physically and sexually abused an inmate in their care

  • $750,000

    Against a psychiatric hospital for their failure to prevent a woman in their care from being sexually assaulted.

  • 74 Million Dollar Settlement

    Against a Christian Board School and other defendants that allowed horrific acts of sexual and physical violence against the young children in their care.

  • $3 Million

    Against a University for Child Sexual Abuse

  • $2 Million

    Against a religious organization because of their negligent supervision of a pedophile priest who sexually abused a child

  • $1 Million

    Against child protective services for their failures in preventing the sexual abuse of a child within their care and custody

  • Six Figure Recovery

    Against an all girls religious high school for negligent supervision of a teacher who engaged in sexual conduct with a student on school property

  • Six Figure Recovery

    Against an all girls religious high school for negligent supervision of a teacher who engaged in sexual conduct with a student on school property

  • Six Figure Recovery

    Student sexually harassed and assaulted by high school teacher

  • Six Figure Recovery

    Molestation case against sitting state court judge who admitted to the abuse, resigned from the bench and was then disbarred

  • $1.9 Million

    For a child who was sexually abused by a clergy member

Meet Our Attorneys

Who We Represent

Sadly, sexual abuse can happen to anyone. Oftentimes, companies and institutions attempt to protect predators by sweeping reports of sexual assault under the rug. These companies also have been known to avoid media attention and investigations by law enforcement.

Unfortunately, sexual assault occurs in many settings, including:

  • Religious Organizations
  • Schools
  • Universities
  • Boarding Schools
  • Day Care Centers
  • Mental Health Treatment Facilities
  • At Risk Youth Facilities
  • Hospitals/Doctors’ Offices
  • Massage Therapy Businesses
  • Sport’s Teams
  • Drug & Alcohol Rehabilitation Facilities

No business or profession is immune from these horrific crimes. Sexual predators often hide behind the walls of an institution. Let us expose them and effectuate change by holding the organizations that allowed the assault and abuse accountable.

Free Consultancy

1Step 1
2Step 2
3Step 3
MM slash DD slash YYYY