Every child deserves protection. Unfortunately, some wrongdoers in trusted positions have taken advantage of the innocent. These victims may think there is no where to turn or it is too late, but the trial attorneys at Hendrickson & Long, PLLC are here to help you evaluate your opportunity for justice. With your help, we fight against past, present and future sexual abusers by holding the guilty accountable. Our Trial Attorneys can help your loved one or yourself if you are or have been sexually assaulted or abused; want to know what the legal options are; and want those who enabled the abuse to occur to be held accountable across West Virginia (WV). Regardless of when this occurred, you can find your institutional abuse and neglect lawyer in WV and surrounding states at Hendrickson & Long, PLLC.
Most importantly, the attorneys at Hendrickson & Long recognize and uphold the confidentiality of the victim and their loved ones at all stages through our case evaluation, even during initial consultation. Our expertise and belief in our clients recently helped twenty-nine former students at the Miracle Meadows School in Salem, W.Va., who were child victims of serious sexual and physical abuse, settled their claims for a total of $51.9 million dollars following years of litigation against the school.
The total settlement amount is believed to be a record for such cases in the state.
Types of Abuse and Neglect
- Sex Trafficking
- How are individuals trafficked in the ever-increasing world of the commercial sex trade? Hotels, resorts, nightclubs, casinos and other establishments allow this hideous enterprise to thrive by putting on blinders and ignoring clear signs of abuse. Some of these entities would rather pursue profits than put an end to a dangerous problem.
- Religious or Civic Organizations Sexual Misconduct and Clergy Sexual Abuse
- Numerous cases of sexual abuse by clergy members and others affiliated with religious organizations have occurred during church outings, church activities, on-site visits for church counseling, and at church-related events and activities. institutional abuse and neglect abuse by those placed in authority as leaders in a given faith is, unfortunately, both vile misconduct that spans decades into the past and pervasively egregious misconduct occurring presently.
- Institutional Abuse and Neglect Cases involving Private Schools or Organizations
- These cases involve educators, administrators and other school employees or contractors who sexually assault, abuse or rape students or members of private organizations. The sexual assault of students is a heinous type of predatory conduct that seems to be increasing each year.
- Professional Sports Athletes and Entertainment Sexual Assault, Abuse and Rape
- In the wake of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements there are a large number of individuals who have come forward to share their experience as sexual assault /sexual abuse survivors in their professional careers as athletes, actors, actresses, producers, models, musicians and other similar careers.
- institutional Abuse and Neglect on the College Campus Sexual Assault, Abuse and Rape
- According to a study conducted by the Association of American Universities (AAU), among undergraduate students, 23.1% of females and 5.4% of males experience rape or sexual assault through physical force, violence or incapacitation. The same study found that 11.2% of all students experience rape or sexual assault through physical force, violence or incapacitation (among all graduate and undergraduate students).
- College Sports Sexual Assault, Abuse and Rape
- Sexual violence in college sports is starting to receive more attention in the media. Studies show that between 2% and 8% of athletes are victims of sexual abuse within a sports environment. Sadly, non-athlete students are also sexually abused by those associated or affiliated with athletic programs. A recent study revealed that of the 46% of participants who engaged in sexually coercive behaviors on campus, more than half were intercollegiate and recreational athletes.
- institutional Abuse and Neglect by Medical Providers, Counselors or Caregivers
- Many survivors (adults and children) have experienced sexual abuse arising from their association with hospitals, residential care facilities, daycare, etc.
Recent developments in institutional Abuse and Neglect Law
On March 25, 2020, Governor Jim Justice signed into law a bill allowing victims up to the Age of 36 or 4 years after discovery of the sexual assault or sexual abuse, whichever is longer, to pursue litigation against perpetrators and private organizations.
Additionally, victims may now sue any person or organization which aided, abetted, or concealed the sexual assault or abuse.
MOST IMPORTANTLY, if you are in this new range up to the age of 36, your previous claim IS NOW REVIVED until the victim, yourself or your loved one, turns age-36, even if previously denied. The Trial Attorneys at Hendrickson & Long, PLLC can help you revive this claim in order to finally, and justly, attempt to hold institutions, institutional abusers and their enablers accountable.
Protecting our Clients and their Loved Ones
While we understand filing a lawsuit may bring up difficult memories and emotions, the Attorneys at Hendrickson & Long, PLLC have a skilled network to hold the abuser and the enablers accountable for their institutional abuse and neglect. Each lawsuit against such individuals and organizations encourages further reform to help victims and their families heal, and helps prevent the unconscionable act of institutional abuse and neglect from existing in West Virginia (WV) and nationwide.
It is important to remember that even though an individual or organization may be named in a report, database or lawsuit, these mentions and attributions, on their own, are merely allegations. Our legal system presumes that a person accused of or charged with a crime is innocent until proven guilty.
(Courtesy of AbuseGuardian.com)
Navigating An Institutional Abuse and Neglect case with Your Lawyer
If you or your loved one has been a victim of institutional abuse and neglect, you may bring a civil action against the perpetrator to seek compensation for your injuries and damages. Bringing a claim, gathering evidence, and navigating the judicial system are not matters that your family and you should need to handle on your own during this emotional time. Instead, you should enlist an experienced lawyer at Hendrickson & Long, PLLC to take legal action on your behalf.
In many cases, both the defendant and the defendant’s employer may be sued for damages resulting from the institutional abuse and neglect. Under the theory of vicarious liability, an employer is liable for the negligent acts that its employees commit during the course and scope of their employment. Although there may be a criminal action also pending against the defendant, a victim and their family may allege civil theories based on assault and battery, negligent infliction of emotional distress, intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligent hiring, or negligent supervision. The outcome of the civil case does not depend on the outcome of the criminal case, since the standard of proof is different in each of them.
Your Hendrickson & Long, PLLC Lawyer understands a Parent’s Perspective
As a parent or loved one, one of the most traumatic situations that you can face is learning that your loved one has been a victim of institutional abuse and neglect. Such an event often has life-altering consequences for the victim and their family, requiring substantial therapy and treatment to alleviate. And while no amount of compensation will ever fully undo the harm, it can help cover the costs associated with the institutional abuse and neglect, and ease the victim’s pain and suffering. At Hendrickson & Long, PLLC, our Trial Attorneys have substantial experience handling these types of institutional abuse and neglect cases. We offer a free consultation to help you learn about the options that may be available to your child and you.
Hendrickson & Long Has the Team of Attorneys You Need in WV
Hendrickson & Long, PLLC is a mid-sized, WV-based firm that provides comprehensive legal advice and support for your family in WV.
In addition, many of Hendrickson & Long’s attorneys have received individual recognition for professional knowledge or ethical standards like these:
- Named as Super Lawyers or Rising Stars by Super Lawyers
- Recognized by U.S. News & World Report’s Best Law Firms,
- Recognition for professional excellence on Martindale.com
Should litigation become necessary, our civil litigation skills are top-notch.
Contact us today to begin building a relationship with your lawyer in WV