Where Can I Find the Best Sexual Assault Lawyers in St. Louis?200 N. Broadway, Suite 720
St. Louis, MO 63102
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Best Sexual Assault Lawyers in St. Louis
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According to recent research, sexual assault and victimization have been increasing in the past few years. In one year alone, more than 393,000 people were victims of sexual assault in the United States.
Victims of these heinous acts deserve justice. In addition to criminal prosecutions, sexual assault survivors can seek significant civil damages from the responsible party.
The sexual assault lawyers at Morgan & Morgan fight tirelessly to get justice for those who have experienced an attack.
Most people do not know how to go about finding the best St. Louis sexual assault lawyers. Below, we will discuss important strategies for finding the right attorney to represent you. If you have been the victim of a sexual assault or rape, the experts at Morgan & Morgan can help.
When you hire our firm, we will build a powerful legal case to recover the financial compensation that is rightfully yours. Fill out the simple contact form on the Morgan & Morgan website today.
Our St. Louis sexual assault lawyers will arrange a no-cost, no-obligation case review. During this meeting, we will examine the facts of your case and help you to determine the best course of action.
Defining “Sexual Assault”
“Sexual assault” or “sexual misconduct” are not terms that only refer to rape. Sadly, many victims choose not to report their sexual assault because they believe that their experience does not count.
Sometimes, victims think that the authorities will not believe their story. Some individuals who have experienced sexual assault choose not to report it in order to avoid the incident becoming public.
Considering the rise in sexual assault cases, it is critical to hold those who engage in such misconduct accountable. Contacting St. Louis sexual assault lawyers can ensure that those who commit assault are held financially responsible for the harm that they cause.
The term “sexual assault” can refer to any action that is non-consensual and sexual in nature. Federal and state laws cover sexual assault.
Sexual assaults and rapes are not usually about passion or emotion. Instead, they are crimes in which someone tries to gain power over a victim.
It is important to understand that sexual assault victims are never at fault for what they experience. Sexual assault is a criminal action. The moral and legal responsibility lies with the person who committed the crime.
The St. Louis sexual assault lawyers at Morgan & Morgan have years of handling these delicate cases. We know that victims have a right to privacy and discretion.
Some sexual assault cases do require victims to testify at trial. But in these cases, victims are helping to ensure that others will not have to share their terrible experiences.
At Morgan & Morgan, our team will do everything possible to protect your rights and privacy throughout your sexual assault claim. Following this type of traumatic event, you deserve to be represented by a compassionate attorney who fights in your best interests.
It is critical to file charges against the person who sexually assaulted you. This will help to bring a dangerous person to justice and protect others from being hurt.
Civil and Criminal Sexual Assault Claims
Sexual assault is a crime. However, the burden of proof to secure criminal sexual assault convictions is high.
In criminal cases, allegations must be proven “beyond a reasonable doubt.” This can be incredibly difficult. But regardless of the status of a criminal charge, sexual assault can also be prosecuted through civil courts. This is true whether the responsible party is convicted criminally or not.
Victims of sexual assault have the option to sue for financial compensation in addition to pursuing a criminal charge.
While most civil lawsuits involve a lawsuit against the perpetrator, some may involve a lawsuit against a third party.
For instance, suppose that a sexual assault took place at work. In cases like this, the victim may be able to sue their employer. This is especially true if the business did not run a background check on the perpetrator.
If an apartment complex or rental property does not provide adequate lighting or security, the owners may be liable for assaults that happen as a result. Speak with skilled St. Louis sexual assault lawyers to determine the liable parties in your case.
Types of Damages in Civil Sexual Assault Cases
The term for financial payments from a liable party to the victim is “damages.” The types of damages in a civil sexual assault case are similar to those in other personal injury claims.
Primarily, civil damages are divided into two categories: “economic” and “non-economic.”
When most people think of the payments that victims are awarded after an accident or injury, they think of economic damages. These payments are meant to compensate the victim for direct monetary losses that have arisen as the result of the inciting incident.
In sexual assault cases, victims do not only face the horrific psychological and emotional damages from their attack. Many people experience financial losses, as well.
Some of the most common examples of economic damages include payments to compensate for:
- Current medical care and treatments
- Anticipated future medical expenses
- Travel and lodging needed for medical care
- Loss of income or wages from missed work
- Loss of employment, if relevant
- Costs from therapy and counseling
Any type of harm that results in a financial loss can be claimed through economic damages. The St. Louis sexual assault lawyers at Morgan & Morgan have years of experience accurately estimating the value of civil claims.
We will use receipts, invoices, bills, and other documents to pursue maximum economic damages in your sexual assault case.
The most difficult consequences following a sexual assault are not financial. Victims often deal with years of emotional and psychological trauma.
These intangible harms can result in strained relationships and work-related problems. Victims deserve compensation for these incredibly difficult experiences.
Financial payments that are intended to make up for these harms are called “non-economic” damages. Some of the most common examples of non-economic damages include payments to address:
- Physical pain and suffering
- Psychological trauma
- Stress and anxiety disorder
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Resulting relationship difficulties
Sometimes, the spouses of sexual assault victims also suffer serious negative consequences. They may feel anger, fear, resentment, or loss of sexual connection with their partner.
In some cases, these feelings cause damage to the marriage or relationship. In these cases, you may be able to pursue a civil case for compensation for such losses.
Being raped or sexually assaulted is one of the most difficult experiences that anyone can face. Victims deserve justice for their financial and personal losses.
If you were the victim of a rape or sexual assault, it is vital to contact the accomplished St. Louis sexual assault lawyers at Morgan & Morgan. Our skilled team will work hard to recover the full amount of compensation that you are due.
Winning a Civil Sexual Assault Case
In some cases, victims will have a better chance of recovering civil damages if the perpetrator is found guilty in criminal court. Following a criminal conviction, you may be able to present evidence from the criminal case to show that the defendant is guilty of the assault.
But even without a criminal conviction, you may be able to recover civil damages. Regardless, the standard of proof is lower in civil cases than in criminal prosecutions.
To find the defendant guilty in a civil sexual abuse case, the plaintiff needs to prove that it is “more likely than not” that they committed the act. The legal phrase that describes this standard is “a preponderance of the evidence.”
A skilled tort attorney will review the facts of your situation to build the most persuasive case possible. The legal experts at Morgan & Morgan will fight tirelessly for maximum compensation in your case.
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What Is a “Statute of Limitations” and Why Does It Matter?
A “statute of limitations” is a legal time limit. Victims who hope to recover financial compensation need to file a legal action before the statute of limitations expires.
This legal time limit varies by state. In Missouri, those who have experienced sexual assault must pursue a civil claim within five years of the incident.
Because of this statute of limitations, it is critical to speak with a legal professional as soon as possible.
How Can I Find the Best Sexual Assault Lawyer for My Needs?
Reputable tort attorneys will provide new clients with a no-cost legal consultation to discuss the facts of their case. When you have found a firm that you are considering, schedule an initial meeting.
Ask questions during this case evaluation to help you determine whether an attorney is a good fit for you.
Relevant questions include:
- How long have you practiced law?
- Have you handled sexual assault cases before?
- Do you have courtroom experience?
- What is your success rate?
- Do you believe I can win this case?
- What is your firm’s payment structure?
- How much do you believe my case is worth?
- What is the next step after this consultation?
- How will your firm protect my rights and privacy?
These are only some general examples of relevant questions. It is also important to ask any specific questions that relate to your sexual assault case.
What Is a Contingency Fee Payment Arrangement?
Most tort law firms receive compensation through contingency fees. When you hire an attorney, you will agree upon a specific percentage of the compensation from your case to be set aside.
When your case has been successfully settled or won at trial, that percentage is used to cover attorneys’ fees. This means that you will pay nothing unless and until our legal team gets money for you.
Let Morgan & Morgan Get the Money You Deserve
When you need the best legal representation in St. Louis, reach out to America’s largest personal injury firm: Morgan & Morgan. Since we opened our doors in 1988, we have secured more than $15 billion in compensation for our clients.
If you or someone you love has experienced sexual assault, you should not have to bear the emotional and financial burdens alone. Fill out the contact form on our website to schedule a no-cost legal evaluation today. Let Morgan & Morgan get justice for you.