Every sexual abuse case is different. Read on for some information, questions, and answers about what is involved in bringing a sexual abuse compensation claim with Donoghue Solicitors.
1. Basic Information You Can Give Our Sexual Abuse Lawyers at the Start
Deciding to contact our sexual abuse lawyers is a positive step. The information our lawyers need to consider your claim varies, but you can help make things easier by giving us the following details when you get in touch:
- Your name
- Phone number
- Email address
- Best time to call you back
- Were you injured? If so, what medical assessment and treatment did you get?
- Do you have anything else to claim for other than your injuries? If so, what? Can you prove it?
- Have you reported matters to the police, doctors, therapists and/or others?
- Do you intend to, or have you already, complained or brought some other action (including court proceedings)?
- What happened and when? (see below for how to answer this question)
You can write this information in our online contact form or have it handy when you call us on 08000 124 246.
2. What Happened and When?
Telling us what happened can be difficult. Rest assured we will do our best to deal with things carefully and sensitively. Again, it might be easier to write things down before getting in touch by phone, or use our online form.
We need as much detail as possible, including:
- Dates of sexual abuse and/or sexual assault
- Details of what happened and how it has affected you since
- What explanations (if any) were given to you at the time and later by those in authority
- What happened in any court proceedings?
- Any other things you think we should know.
3. What Happens After You Get in Touch
When you contact us about your sexual abuse claim one of our legally-qualified experts will consider it as soon as possible.
If appropriate, they will contact you for more information. This often happens so we can get the full picture.
Our lawyers will let you know what they think about your case after that.
While we try to help as many people as possible with their sexual abuse claims, unfortunately, we cannot take every case. You can read the criteria we apply when deciding on which cases we take here. If we can’t help, there may be other lawyers who can.
4. Can I Have Someone Else Present When We Meet?
Yes. Your comfort and privacy are our primary concern. We can arrange for a chaperone from our firm, or for you to bring a trusted friend, when we meet.
5. How Will We Keep in Touch?
If you instruct us to pursue your sexual abuse compensation claim we will send you the relevant paperwork. Most clients instruct us electronically with emails, text messages, and phone calls. We have invested in cutting-edge systems to make things as easy as possible for you to keep in touch.
6. How Long Will it Take?
Sexual abuse cases are among the most difficult legal cases, which is one reason why so few lawyers take them.
They involve complex issues of fact and law (which you can read about here). It is for this, and many other reasons, that it is impossible to predict with accuracy how long cases take. It is not uncommon for sexual abuse claims to take years to resolve, especially when they involve incidents which happened some time ago.
Despite this, the Civil Procedure Rules promote early settlement where possible and the use of pre-action protocols to avoid formal court proceedings. This can result in some cases settling relatively quickly.
We will discuss timescales in your case when you get in touch.
7. Will You Keep My Sexual Abuse Case Confidential?
Yes. You can trust us to treat your sexual abuse case with the utmost confidence. Our lawyers are qualified, regulated professionals in their own right. And Donoghue Solicitors is a firm of solicitors, authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and bound by its Code of Conduct. We apply the strictest ethical rules to every case we pursue. (Read more about why you can trust us with your claim here.)
8. Will I Have to Go to Court?
It’s possible, but unlikely, that you would have to go to court to prove your claim.
We have a solid reputation for bringing genuine sexual abuse court cases in the UK. Defendants know our record and treat our clients’ cases with respect. We push hard to get our clients the maximum compensation available, backing their claims all the way to court if need be.
But often we negotiate fair settlements which benefit our clients by giving them the compensation they deserve, without the need to attend court.
In the unlikely event that your case goes to trial, you should know that witnesses are usually required to give evidence in court. To help make the experience less upsetting, special measures can be put in place when giving evidence. These include using:
- a pre-recorded interview
- courtroom screens to shield witnesses from the defendant
- a live video link to a separate room
- evidence given in private, without the public and most journalists present.
- your details can be kept anonymous in any written judgment.
How Do I Start a Sexual Abuse Case in the UK?
Our sympathetic and understanding lawyers are trained in dealing with sexual abuse cases and waiting to help you with your claim.