Legal Recourse For Survivors of Sexual Abuse by Coaches
Attorney Brian Kent is a victims rights lawyer who specializes in helping the victims of sexual violence find justice. We’ve asked him to contribute some information on how the legal system can help families affected by child sexual abuse:
When we sign our kids up for youth sports leagues, we expect their experience to be enriching, educational, and formative. There are numerous benefits to playing youth sports, and the coaches we entrust with our children’s care should be mentors who help them develop valuable skills both on and off the court. Unfortunately, sexual predators are drawn to positions like coaching because they see an opportunity to exploit their positions of trust in order to sexually abuse the children they’re trusted to oversee.
When a child is sexually assaulted by an adult entrusted with their care, the victim and their family struggle with many difficulties. For many families, seeing the perpetrator arrested, charged, and convicted can be a valuable part of the healing process. In addition, families in this tragic situation should be aware that the organizations which employ these coaches, along with the perpetrators themselves, can be held liable for their role in committing or enabling sexual abuse.
If a youth sports organization’s negligence played a role in sexual abuse, the victim’s family could have grounds for a lawsuit against the organization. For example, an organization could be considered negligent if they failed to notify authorities of previous complaints of sexual misconduct, which resulted in another victim being abused.
If your family is struggling to find peace after your child was sexually abused by a coach, we advise speaking with an experienced sexual abuse victims lawyer who can help you understand your legal options.
Coles County Circuit Courthouse