Sexual Assault Lawyer
Sexual assault involves any unwanted physical contact that is sexual in nature. My clients tell me it is a terrifying experience. Survivors often find themselves experiencing a range of fears and other emotions. Many survivors are understandably reluctant to talk about their experience and want to put it behind them as soon as possible.
Sexual assault can have long-term physical and psychological effects, as well as affecting everything from your family life to your job. Compensation may be available to help relieve the financial burden this can cause, and our sexual assault injury lawyers are available to help. Please contact Grosso Hooper Law for more details. Your information will be kept strictly confidential.
In order to get compensation, there are several parties you can sue:
- The person who assaulted you - In order to get compensation, you have to prove liability – that the person you are suing sexually assaulted you. This could include someone who breached their fiduciary duty to protect you and maintain a strictly professional relationship with you, for example a doctor, teacher or coach.
- The employer of the person who assaulted you - If you can prove the employer was negligent (for example, a school board allowing a teacher to continue in his or her post despite complaints from students), you may be entitled to compensation.
- The person who put you in a relationship with the assaulter - You could be entitled to compensation if you can prove that a person or organization was negligent in putting you in a relationship with the assaulter, or in letting that relationship continue.
Timing is important. You must start a lawsuit within two years of the time of the sexual assault. There are exceptions to this rule, and the facts of your case may allow you to make a claim after the two year limit.
Proving liability does not guarantee payment of compensation if the person you sue has no money or insurance to pay. Grosso Hooper Law will be able to advise you before you begin your lawsuit, and will fight for you to get payment once it is successful.
There are three types of compensation you may be entitled to:
- Pain and suffering and loss of quality of life (general damages) - This is a claim for your past, present and future pain and suffering, both physical and psychological. In Ontario, the maximum compensation is approximately $358,000. In sexual assault cases the range is from $10,000 to $225,000.
- Pecuniary damages (loss of wages) - This is a claim for loss of wages in the past, present and future. If you are unable to work (temporarily or for the rest of your life), return to work but make less money, or fail to get employment or promotion because of the assault, you may be entitled to compensation.
- Out-of-pocket expenses and future care costs - This compensates you for any expenses caused by ongoing physical or psychological difficulties, including over-the-counter prescription medication, rehabilitation devices, or parking and mileage for doctors’ appointments.
A case in which the defendant, Vranich sexually assaulted a young employee of his nightclub, Elixir. Vranich had used his financial control over her as an employer to isolate her from her peers and block any path of escape while he sexually violated her. Vranich was found liable and Elixir vicariously liable for the conduct of Vranich. There was no liability found with respect to Paradise Lane Developments. The Judge awarded the Plaintiff (represented by Rob Hooper) $125,000 for pain and suffering, $25,000 for punitive damages, $75,000 for loss of earning capacity, $26,000 for future therapy costs and $48,753 for legal costs. The judgment stands out because the award for pain and suffering is among the highest level in Ontario. Also, punitive damages being awarded against the corporation (who were vicariously liable) is a first in Ontario.
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