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Exclusively Representing Victims of Sexual Abuse Nationwide
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If you are looking for someone to take you seriously, treat you with respect and integrity, I would call the Herman Law Firm.
Jeff Herman is recognized as the country’s leading attorney for victims of sexual abuse. Jeff is aggressive, passionate and skilled. If you have a civil sexual abuse case, Jeff is the attorney you want representing you. As the firm’s founding and managing partner, Jeff has developed a national reputation for his powerful advocacy and unwavering dedication to his clients. He is a first-rate trial lawyer committed to empowering victims of sexual abuse to take back their lives and begin the healing process.
With over 30 years of experience, Jeff understands the tremendous challenges victims of sexual abuse encounter on their journey to recovery. He is considered to be a pioneer in the field of sexual abuse cases and has been featured on CNN, HLN, Fox News, The New York Times and many other national and international media outlets. Jeff believes that community advocacy is the key to preventing childhood sexual abuse and is involved with various organizations dedicated to protecting children from sexual abuse through comprehensive education. Jeff volunteers his time to train law enforcement on interviewing child victims of sexual abuse.
Proactive, effective, efficient and vigorous in the way we represent our clients
We have a nationwide practice
Unfortunately, child sexual abuse in the Catholic Church is not a new tragedy that exists. For decades, even hundreds of years, the Church has known that priests were using their positions in the church to have access to young children and sexually abuse them. A main part of the problem was the fact the Church follows guidelines that promote a world of secrecy. For a predator, this was the perfect environment to be able to exist in. If someone found out about the abuse, rather than exposing the abuser, the Church would simply send the abuser to another diocese, where the predator would continue to abuse children. The Church ultimately [protected the predators, creating cover-ups, leading to the terrible cycle of abuse that exists in the Church.
The main issue within the Church is the fact that the abuse was covered up and ‘swept under the carpet’ for decades, potentially centuries. This is not just an issue within the United States, but rather a global issue. The church neglected and failed to protect the emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual wellbeing of children. Not only did they fail to protect them by exposing the abusers, but also by failing to support the victims that did come forward.
If a priest sexually abused you, you should contact an experienced child sexual abuse attorney who handles sex abuse cases. This consultation will help you determine if you can still pursue a claim or if the statute of limitations has expired. In recent years, many states have created ‘lookback windows,’ which allow child sexual abuse victims to still bring a civil claim, no matter what age the victim is now and no matter when the child sexual abuse happened. Many studies have shown that victims often do not come forward about the abuse until much later in life, the average age being 52. The legal system has prevented hundreds of thousands of victims from being able to seek justice. Now, there still is that possibility to seek retribution and justice for the abuse you endured.
The states that have enacted lookback windows include New York, California, North Carolina, New Jersey, Washington D.C., Montana, Vermont and Arizona. However, these lookback windows will expire by the end of 2021, 2022, or 2023, depending on the states. Therefore, it is crucial to contact a knowledgeable lawyer as soon as possible if you experienced child sexual abuse.
Thousands of priests have been accused of molesting children in the Catholic Church in the United States so far. This is an astounding number, however, this does not represent the true number of pedophiles that exist in the Church today and who were clergymen in the past. This stark reality can be attributed to the fact that while many child sexual abuse victims have come forward, there are hundreds of thousands who have not come forward as well. This leaves thousands of additional priests who have never been identified, as until recently there has never been a way for the victims to expose them through the legal system.
A significant reason why many child sexual abuse victims never come forward is that their abuser is supposed to be a respect member of the religious community and the community the victim is in as a whole. This respect for the abuser makes many victims fear that they won’t be believed or that people will react negatively to them once they come forward. However, it is crucial to understand that the victim is never to blame. When you file a lawsuit against your religious institution, there will be people who are extremely supportive of you and there may also be people who have backlash. It is a complicated issue because there are some people who will not want to believe the truth – that the person they found a connection to God through is a predator. It will be difficult for some people to understand that it is not an indictment of their belief in God, but rather it is an indictment of a man within an institution. However, the most important thing to remember is that by coming forward, no matter what the response, we are exposing predators and protecting children. By exposing this predator, it does not have anything to do with your belief in God.
Sexual abuse occurs in many forms. It is committed by many different types of people in your life and effects many different types of victims. Consequently, sex abuse lawsuits are extremely varied and require varying approaches.
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