Child Sex Abuse Lawyer

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Being abused as a child has far-reaching trauma even into adulthood.  Many people who were sexually abused as children need years of therapy to overcome the physical and psychological trauma they’ve suffered. 

What Defines Child Sexual Abuse in Florida?

While most people generally understand what child sexual abuse is, if you decide to take legal action, you must follow Florida’s legal definition of child sexual abuse. Florida law states that child abuse includes:

“…any willful act or threatened act that results in any physical, mental, or sexual abuse, injury, or harm that causes or is likely to cause the child’s physical, mental, or emotional health to be significantly impaired.”

This is an extremely broad definition of child abuse that includes sexual abuse. This definition gives Florida law enforcement and the Florida courts wide discretion to charge and prosecute your abusers. 

It’s important to take note of the term “willful acts.” This means that even if the child agreed to sexual relations with an adult, the activities and relationships still are sexual abuse. 

Bring it to Us,

We'll Bring it to Them.

When you bring a case to Stevenson Klotz Injury Lawyers, we'll get to work immediately investigating and fighting the insurance company to ensure you are compensated for your injuries.

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What is Florida’s Age of Consent Law?

Florida law is clear. Aside from a few exceptions, you must be age 18 to give consent for sexual activity. Consent isn’t a factor in children under 12. Child sexual abuse cases that involve sexual activity may include a conversation regarding consent. To put it simply, minors under the age of 18 cannot give legal consent.

However, there are exceptions in Florida law for 16 and 17 year-olds dating people up to the age of 23. Under Florida law, there are six factors that makeup consent. They include:

  1. The understanding of sexual contact based on age, developmental maturity, and cognitive functioning.
  2. The knowledge about the standards that society has put on sexual contact.
  3. The awareness of the consequences involved with sexual contact
  4. The assumption of equality between both parties
  5. The decision was voluntary
  6. The parties had the mental competence to make a decision regarding sexual contact. 

If your individual circumstances involve a Florida teenager, you should speak to a child sexual abuse attorney at Stevenson Klotz to understand how Florida law may impact your case. 

What Are the Long-term Consequences Regarding Child Sexual Abuse?

Make no mistake – abuse is intentional harm. While child sexual abuse does cause physical harm, the mental trauma you may have experienced could last for years. According to the American Counseling Association, the long-term effects of child sexual abuse may include:

  1. Depression
  2. Self-blame, guilt, and shame
  3. Eating Disorders
  4. Body Issues
  5. Stress and/or Anxiety
  6. Relationship Problems
  7. Sexual Difficulties

How Can A Florida Child Sexual Abuse Attorney Help?

If you are an adult survivor of child sexual abuse, or the parent of a child sexual abuse victim, coping with the trauma can be overwhelming for you and the child. The sympathetic and experienced child sexual abuse attorneys at Stevenson Klotz can assist you and your family seek justice against the abuser.

Some of the ways we can help you or your child include:

  1. Investigate Your Case: We will investigate the situation surrounding sexual abuse in order to build the strongest case possible. We may gather all the available evidence such as medical records and police reports.

We will locate and talk to any witnesses who may have suspected or reported the abuse and consult with any necessary medical experts who can talk about the extent of the abuse. 

  1. Attempt to Negotiate with the Defense: While there may be a criminal case against your abuser, your civil lawsuit will only end with a verdict for you or the defendant. If the Florida court finds in your favor, you may be able to collect damages that are related to your sexual abuse.  Keep in mind that may victims try to negotiate so that young children don’t have to be further traumatized by testifying in court. We will negotiate on your behalf in order to obtain the best possible outcome for your individual case. 
  2. Be a Strong Advocate In Court: Some child sexual abuse cases don’t settle, and we will then litigate your case.  If your Florida child sexual abuse case goes to trial, we would have built a case against the abuser to fight for your rights and increase the odds of getting a verdict in your favor. 

Bring it to Us,

We'll Bring it to Them.

When you bring a case to Stevenson Klotz Injury Lawyers, we'll get to work immediately investigating and fighting the insurance company to ensure you are compensated for your injuries.

Call 850-444-0000
Free Case Evaluation

If you or your child was a victim of Florida child sexual abuse, you deserve justice and to receive monetary compensation for your physical injuries and long-term emotional and psychological trauma. 

Contact the Pensacola child sexual abuse attorneys at Stevenson Klotz for your private and confidential consultation. Allow us to worry about the details of your individual case while you focus on healing and having the ability to move forward with your life. 

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