If I Was Sexually Abused as a Child, Can I Still Sue?


For adults who were sexually abused as children, revisiting this traumatic time in their lives can traumatize them all over again. However, many victims do revisit these memories when they decide to file a lawsuit against their abusers.

If you’re considering filing a civil suit against the person or people responsible for your childhood sexual abuse, you should be prepared for what’s to come. Factors like how old you were when the abuse began and ended and when you became aware of the abuse will determine whether you are able to sue the perpetrator.

The Statute of Limitations for Childhood Sex Abuse

Under Illinois law, you are able to sue the individual who sexually abused you as a child as long as you file within ten years of the time you discover the abuse.

Many abuse survivors were either too young to have any memory of the abuse or blocked it from their memories and only become aware of what their abuser did to them as adults.

For this reason, the state of Illinois allows abuse survivors a substantial amount of time to come forward with a lawsuit against their abusers.

The Compensation You Can Recover

It’s our job to ensure that you obtain full compensation for what you’ve been through. We will make sure every single hardship you’ve suffered is accounted for when calculating the value of your claim. Some of the most commonly sought damages in sexual abuse cases include the following:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Medical expenses
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Mental anguish
  • Lost wages
  • Court costs and attorney fees

The judge may also decide that you are entitled to punitive damages. Ordinarily, punitive damages are only awarded when the actions of the defendant were malicious or egregiously negligent. Sexual abuse cases most often meet these criteria.

Meet with a Chicago Sexual Abuse Lawyer

If you are interested in bringing a civil suit against your abuser but aren’t sure how to proceed, speak with a compassionate Chicago sex abuse lawyer at Lane & Lane, LLC as soon as possible. We won’t be able to know how much time we have left to file your claim until we discuss the details of your case.

You can schedule your free consultation today by giving our office a call at 312-332-1400 or completing the convenient contact form below.

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