California Child Sexual Abuse Lawyers

How Can a Child Sexual Abuse Lawyer Help You?

Child sexual abuse is one of the most horrific crimes committed against young, innocent survivors. An experienced attorney can help you navigate the legal system to seek justice, closure, and compensation. A lawsuit can also help remove predators and expose institutional failures that leave children vulnerable to harm.

Child sexual abuse cases require a unique and delicate approach, considering the sensitivity and complexity of the subject matter. We recognize the immense courage it takes for survivors to come forward and share their stories. With that in mind, our attorneys provide a safe and supportive environment, ensuring that each survivor is treated with respect, dignity, and utmost care throughout the legal process.

Jessica Pride and the attorneys at the Pride Law Firm work to empower survivors and their families by fighting for your rights, seeking justice, and holding responsible parties accountable. We firmly believe that every survivor deserves to be heard, validated, and compensated to the maximum amount for the harm they have endured.

If you or a loved one have been a victim of child sexual abuse, we are here to help. Reach out to us today online or by calling (619) 516-8166 to schedule a confidential consultation. Your communications with us are fully confidential, and we can discuss your legal options and provide the guidance and support you need. Together, we can work towards justice and healing.

What Is Child Sexual Abuse?

Child sexual abuse is a form of child abuse that involves sexually assaulting a child under the age of 18. It is always non-consensual because a minor is too young to consent. It is also called “sexual molestation” and “child rape.” 

Sexual abuse involving a child comes in many forms and can happen in a range of settings. Moreover, it can often be hard to detect if it isn’t accidentally or intentionally exposed. The abuse can be blatant or suggestive, manipulative or threatening, physical or verbal. 

When a child is abused, it is a serious violation of trust for the child that is extremely confusing. Because of the contrast in authority and power, sexual abuse is also an intimidating and frightening experience for a child.

According to the National Center for Victims of Crime (NCVC), one in five girls and one in 20 boys are survivors of sexual abuse. More disturbingly, experts agree that the “prevalence of child sexual abuse is difficult to determine” because it is often not reported.

5 Misconceptions About Child Sexual Predators Dispelled by a Child Sexual Abuse Attorney

Here are some important facts that may dispel misconceptions about who perpetrates childhood sexual abuse:

  1. Child sexual predators are not a homogenous group of pedophiles; they have varied nuances and backgrounds that make it hard to predict their actions.
  2. Abuse does not only happen in situations and locations that are convenient. Some offenders go to great lengths to plan just the right abuse situation.
  3. Women can sexually abuse children just as much as men.
  4. Child sexual abuse can happen in any family, despite level of income, education, religion, or race.
  5. Not all sexual predators are repeat offenders, which makes the crime more difficult to detect.

Child sexual abusers can’t be categorized by certain looks or behavior. Abusers most often act alone, but can also commit the crime with accomplices or while bystanders look the other way. Sadly, many people who become aware of the sexual abuse fail to disclose it, allowing it to continue repeatedly, sometimes to many children over a period of time.

Who could be committing child sexual abuse? 

The following are examples of potential abusers: 

  • Adult family members such as a parent, step-parent, uncle, cousin, or grandparent
  • An older sibling or a sibling’s friend
  • Foster or adoptive parents
  • Neighbors or adult family friends
  • A playmate’s parent or sibling
  • Babysitters, a babysitter’s parent, or the parent of another child that a teen babysits for on a regular basis
  • A teacher, coach, teacher’s assistant, or camp counselor
  • A church pastor, priest, rabbi, imam, or other religious leaders
  • Physicians, nurses, or other medical attendees
  • A business owner at a store or other place the child frequents

When adults are with children, you can observe their relationships with others, particularly older children or adults. Teach your child boundaries like the concept of personal space and private areas, and who they should tell if those boundaries are violated. Abuse can be physical, emotional, visual, or even verbal, so making sure your child is aware of unsafe words, touching, or sights can help protect them from certain grooming activities.

If your child has been a victim of child sexual abuse, it is crucial to take immediate action to protect their rights and seek justice. Consulting with an experienced injury attorney who specializes in child sexual abuse cases can provide you with the guidance and support needed during this challenging time.
Perhaps the suspected predator is a close family member and you are struggling with conflicting feelings of guilt and outrage. For help sorting out these strong emotions, please contact Jessica Pride today at (619) 516-8166. We understand what you are going through as a family and can help you decide how to best move forward.

What Types of Assaults Can a Child Sex Abuse Lawyer Handle?

Child sexual abuse can involve many forms of unwelcome sexual contact or suggestive behavior between an adult and minor, or between children with a significant age difference. 

Examples of different forms of sexual assault we can handle include:

  • Touching, rubbing, or caressing
  • Non-touching sexual behavior such as exposure of genitalia
  • Manufacturing, viewing, or sharing child pornography
  • Taking pornographic photos of a child
  • Intercourse, or any type of penetration involving a child’s private body parts
  • Masturbation in the presence of a minor
  • Obscene contact through the telephone or online
  • Sex trafficking and prostitution
  • Unwanted hugging, kissing, massaging, or tickling in a suggestive, sexual manner
  • Sharing sexual stories or personal sexual information
  • Any type of sexual contact or inappropriate behavior, whether verbal, visual, or physical, that is psychologically harmful to a minor

Our attorneys at The Pride Law Firm have trauma-informed training to ensure we can handle these cases appropriately. We are here to provide stability, professionalism, and comfort to help our clients pursue justice in a healing manner.

What Does a Child Sex Abuse Attorney Do For Your Case?

When you feel ready, you can contact an attorney for advice and to determine what your legal options might be. Like any lawyer, child sexual abuse attorneys provide a wide range of services, such as: 

  • Preparing court filings and documents, including researching relevant laws and any limitations that may need to be overcome
  • Calculating appropriate compensation like medical expenses, therapy costs, pain and suffering, loss of income, and other related damages
  • Zealously representing you in negotiations or at trial

Not all personal injury attorneys are able or willing to take on child sexual abuse cases due to the extra care needed for persons who may be in a space of trauma and pain. Jessica Pride and the entire team at The Pride Law Firm are fully trained and equipped to provide you with not just legal advice and information. We are here to give you the support, affirmation, and emotional counseling you need. 

If you or a loved one have been affected by child sexual abuse, get in touch with us at (619) 516-8166 for a free, no-obligation consultation.

Contact a Childhood Sexual Abuse Attorney

When childhood sexual abuse isn’t talked about, children may learn to cope with the trauma by adopting dangerous coping mechanisms. A child may retreat into silence, dimming their light and joy. They may avoid healthy intimate relationships out of fear. They may turn to self-harm or drug and alcohol abuse to self-medicate. These behaviors can last a lifetime and disrupt intimate or family relationships well into adulthood.

Contact a child sexual abuse lawyer as soon as possible when you learn of or strongly suspect abuse. It’s better to talk about than to doubt or discount yourself or your child. We understand that it takes tremendous courage to step forward and discuss painful and traumatic experiences and will hold your confidences with the utmost privacy.

Why Hire Jessica Pride and the Pride Law Firm?

Jessica Pride has represented men, women, teens, and children who have experienced sexual abuse in public, private, and boarding schools. We have the resources to support LGBTQ+ survivors and those whose cases are made more challenging due to immigration status or the involvement of correctional facilities. We can help you evaluate all your legal options to find the best path forward from where you are today to the resolution you need.

Contact Jessica Pride at (619) 516-8166 to learn about how we can help your child and family heal. All consultations are free, with no obligation. A compassionate staff member is available 24 hours a day to talk, and your information is held in the strictest of confidence. Our staff’s combined years of experience provides unparalleled service to families while seeking the just compensation for physical, psychological, and emotional damages they deserve.

Stepping forward today could bring closure to you, and help uncover and prevent abuse from happening to others.

Proudly Representing Survivors Across the State of California

Early Commuication for Parents

Child Sexual Abuse FAQs

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Where does child sexual abuse typically occur?

Child sexual abuse can happen anywhere, within minutes or over a span of time. Most often it happens at home or in places where the child frequents, such as elementary, junior high, and high schools. This includes daycare and preschool facilities for younger children and after-school programs such as sports and drama classes for teens. 

Outside of school, abuse can happen in churches or other religious meetings, as well as clubs like the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, and other youth organizations. Children can also be assaulted in their family homes, foster homes, or at a neighbor’s or friend’s house.

According to the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN), 93% of children under the age of 18 know their abusers. Many times, it’s a close relative, leader, or friend who the child knows, sees often and trusts.

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What are the signs of sexual abuse in young children?

The signs of sexual abuse may differ between developmental ranges.

Infant and toddler signs in children who are unable to express themselves verbally may show physical or behavioral changes caused by sexual abuse. Examples include increased bedwetting incidents, new sexual curiosity, unusual anger or secretiveness, or unexplained discomfort, pain, itching, bleeding, or bruises in or around the genital area.

Signs of sexual abuse in children or teenagers can show physically through sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) or chronic anxiety conditions like headaches, stomach aches, disturbed sleep patterns, or eating disorders. Emotional signs could include age-inappropriate regressions like thumb-sucking, outbursts of anger or panic, or signs of depression like socially isolating, failing in classwork, or neglecting their hygiene.

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What if I’m an adult who was sexually abused as a child?

Depending on where you live or where the abuse took place, adult survivors may have the opportunity to take legal action. California has expanded child sexual abuse statute of limitations along with other states. The Pride Law Firm is located in San Diego and can handle California cases. If you live outside California, you are still encouraged to contact Jessica Pride at (619) 516-8166 — we can work with co-counsel while pursuing your case.

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What should I do if my child has been sexually assaulted?

The most critical first step is to remove your child from the suspected predator, location, or situation to keep them safe. If you have evidence to report to the police, you should immediately contact your local law enforcement. 

If you file a report, authorities may follow with an investigation and interviews. Having your own lawyer by your side during this process can help increase your comfort, demystify the process, and advise you on when your private information can be withheld from police without harming your child’s case.

There are child abuse hotlines for parents like the National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline or Childhelp Hotline for general advice. Call an experienced sexual assault attorney like Jessica Pride to learn about your specific legal options in pursuing the abuser. 

Contact Jessica Pride at (619) 516-8166. Jessica has represented countless sexual abuse clients through the civil court process, obtaining highly favorable results for her clients’ restitution and justice. More than just an attorney, Jessica is a trusted friend and advocate who has helped many families find their healing after the tragedy of child sexual abuse.

“I just received the self-care package from your team, when I opened the box and read the letter from you all, it felt like a hug came right out of the box. Thank you so much, it meant so much to me.”

– Client of Jessica Pride –

“I am also hopeful and beyond grateful that my voice is being heard! So I want to say thank you Jessica and Christy, for giving me a voice when I felt mine didn’t matter. You guys are truly angels fighting a great cause. I am forever grateful! Thank you so much!”

– Client of Jessica Pride –

“Jessica has been the epitome of the word excellent. She is always easy to talk to and very approachable. Always directly available. Very truthful and efficient. I highly recommend her and her team!!”

– Client of Jessica Pride –

“Your compassion, humility, and fierce advocacy, are the qualities that make you the incredible rockstar attorney that you are. We’re with you in this fight!”

– Lauren Betters (Gender Equality Law Center, NYC) –

“I’m graduating with a finance degree. I just wanted to say thank you for fighting for me. Turns out, I was able to put the pieces together.”

– Client of Jessica Pride –

“I just received the self-care package from your team, when I opened the box and read the letter from you all, it felt like a hug came right out of the box. Thank you so much, it meant so much to me.”

– Client of Jessica Pride –

“I am also hopeful and beyond grateful that my voice is being heard! So I want to say thank you Jessica and Christy, for giving me a voice when I felt mine didn’t matter. You guys are truly angels fighting a great cause. I am forever grateful! Thank you so much!”

– Client of Jessica Pride –