Sexual abuse in all forms is illegal. Unfortunately, this does not prevent it from occurring, often at the hands of trusted individuals. National news reports in recent years have revealed that sexual abuse can and does occur within the church. Sadly, in many cases, this abuse is somewhat of an open secret within the clerical community, with religious institutions and fellow clergy members often turning a blind eye.
If you or your loved one suffered sexual abuse perpetrated by a religious leader or member of the clergy, contact Davis Levin Livingston for a free, confidential consultation regarding your legal options. You may be entitled to recover compensation. While no amount of financial compensation can undo the trauma you or your loved one has experienced, it can help with the physical, emotional, and financial costs associated with the abuse and bring a sense of justice and closure for victims.
Contact the firm today at (808) 740-0633 for a free consultation with an experienced Hawaii clergy abuse attorney. We serve clients in Honolulu and on all the Hawaiian Islands.
Clerical Sexual Abuse in Hawaii
In recent years, information has been publically released that exposes a pattern of abuse within the Diocese of Hawaii, as well as a history of church officials allowing the abuse to continue by failing to report allegations of abuse as crimes or even actively covering up instances of alleged abuse.
According to one report, hundreds of children were sexually abused by clergy and members of the diocese. Often, these clergy members had been transferred to Hawaii after allegations of abuse first surfaced against them.
This type of systematic negligence and covering up of criminal activity should not go unpunished. Apart from criminal action, victims can pursue compensation—including, in some cases, punitive damages—meant to hold those responsible for the abuse accountable.
Compensation for Victims of Clergy Sexual Abuse
Priests, pastors, youth leaders, and other clergy members are supposed to be some of the most trusted and respected members of a community. When this trust is violated, victims can suffer immense losses. Children and minors suffer a loss of innocence in addition to physical and psychological trauma. In some cases, victims may require medical attention, as well as extensive, ongoing psychological therapy. They may have trouble resuming their lives.
When clergy sexual abuse is allowed to continue or actively covered up by church officials, victims may seek compensation from the perpetrator of the abuse, as well as the party/parties responsible for negligently allowing it to continue.
Depending on the unique circumstances of the case, a victim may seek compensation for:
- Medical expenses associated with the abuse, including expenses for both physical and psychological treatment, as well as mental health counseling/therapy
- Pain and suffering, emotional distress, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, depression, and related issues
- Lost wages or loss of support
- Punitive damages, which are designed to punish liable parties for egregious negligence
It is important that you work with an experienced Hawaii clergy sexual abuse attorney who understands how these cases work and what it takes to successfully recover compensation. Davis Levin Livingston has helped victims of negligence fight for justice and the full, fair recoveries they were owed. The firm’s attorneys have secured hundreds of millions of dollars for their clients. We encourage you to reach out to Davis Levin Livingston today to speak to an attorney about your case.
Call our Honolulu office at (808) 740-0633 or contact us online to learn more about how our team can assist you.