I was sexually assaulted in my apartment building but my case was not prosecuted. How can I seek justice?


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A: Victims of sexual abuse often do not know that a civil case can be brought against the abuser, even if a criminal case was not pursued, or was even lost. Civil claims may be brought against the abuser for the assault, so long as the case is filed before the statute of limitations expires. In cases where an adult was sexually assaulted, the Pennsylvania statute of limitations is two years from the date of the act. Most states’ statute of limitations is also two years.

In a case of an assault in a apartment building, the apartment complex landlord may be held liable in addition to the abuser. There are many kinds of claims which may be made against a landlord, which include:

  • failing to provide adequate security,
  • failing to warn tenants of known criminal activity on or near the building,
  • negligent hiring, and
  • negligent retention.

Read more about landlord liability for criminal activity here.

It is best to speak to a knowledgeable sex abuse victims lawyer to discuss the facts of your case and determine the viability of a civil lawsuit.

More from our Pennsylvania Sex Abuse Victims Legal Rights Law Library:

Sexual Abuse Victims Attorney & Advocate

Laffey, Bucci & Kent handles sexual abuse cases in the Northeast area with offices in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York.  Attorneys at the firm are licensed in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Firm partner, Brian Kent, is a former sex crimes unit prosecutor who now fights for victims’ rights to obtain justice in civil cases. The firm has the resources and experience to handle sex abuse cases in all states and welcomes calls from local counsel about potential cases. Click To Call

Published: September 24, 2012