Child Sexual Abuse Claims Rise in LA County
This week, nine new sexual abuse complaints have been filed against Los Angeles County officials on behalf of adults who allege they were abused while in the county’s care as minors. These are just part of the some 2,500 cases currently being gathered under the Child Victims Act. If you have been accused of child sexual abuse, contact our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich as soon as possible to see how we can assist you.
What Is the Child Victims Act?
In 2019, the California legislature passed Assembly Bill 218, also known as the Child Victims Act. Beginning in 2020, the Child Victims Act extends the statute of limitations for childhood sexual abuse survivors to file claims against their abusers. Before the Act was passed, California law required a survivor of childhood sexual assault to file a lawsuit either by the age of 26 or within 3 years of when the victim discovered that their psychological injury was caused by sexual abuse, whichever occurred later. The Child Victims Act, however, extended the deadline so that victims can file a claim either by the age of 40 or within 5 years of when they discover that their psychological injury was caused by sexual abuse, whichever occurs later. For example, if a woman was molested as a child but did not learn of the abuse until she was 50 years old, she can file a sexual abuse claim until she turns 55, at which point the statute of limitations ends.
What Is Happening Now?
Currently, plaintiffs in the nine new sexual abuse complaints against Los Angeles County officials allege that they are among potentially hundreds of children who were abused at the McLaren Hall group home as far back as the late 1950s. According to the attorney for the plaintiffs, there are cases of abuse covering every decade up until the group home was closed in 2003, and the coordinated proceeding gathering the claims currently contains about 2,500 cases.
In the lead case of the proceeding, Jane Doe 1 et al. v. County of Los Angeles, the plaintiffs allege that they were abused as children at MacLaren Hall between 1967 and 1975. Similarly, the nine new cases allege multiple counts of negligence and seek a number of damages from the defendants. Due to the seriousness of these claims and the heavy potential liability, the county will need to reassess their already-strained budget and future funding needs. The county estimates that it will spend up to $3 billion to defend sexual abuse cases brought under the Child Victims Act in 2023.
Contact Wallin & Klarich Today
If you have been accused of child sexual abuse, contact our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich as soon as possible to see how we can assist you. At Wallin & Klarich, we stay up to date with the most recent legal developments so that we can better assist you. With 40+ years of experience, our attorneys have helped thousands of clients successfully reduce or dismiss their sex crimes cases, and we have the skills and resources to help you avoid hefty fines and jail time.
With offices in Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino, Victorville, Torrance, West Covina, Los Angeles, and San Diego, you are sure to find an available and convenient attorney near you. Discover how our team can assist you. Contact us today, toll-free at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free consultation with a skilled defense attorney.