Youth sports allow children and teenagers to socialize with their peers, challenge themselves to learn new skills and enjoy regular time spent exercising enjoyably. Many organizations run sports teams and leagues for young players, from city-run municipal sports to more formally organized private institutions. In all these spaces, the safety of children should be paramount — and the organizations should have a duty to protect their participants from harm.
Unfortunately, that is not always the case. As we’ve seen through blockbuster cases in the courts and the media, such as the Nasser and Sandusky abuse cases, sports organizations have a severe problem with sexual abuse and misconduct. While those high-profile cases garnered attention, less time has been spent focused on wrongdoing that affects only one or a few young people.
Are you the parent of a child abused by a coach, teammate, or another adult involved in their youth sports organization? This terrible breach of trust can have long-lasting effects. Your family has the right to pursue closure and justice through the civil litigation system. At HHJ Trial Attorneys, we can help.
It is vital to provide a child who has experienced sexual abuse the resources and support necessary for healing and the rebuilding of trust. The effects of these actions can last for many years, and in some cases, a lifetime. Providing support, safety, and an environment where your child can feel believed and comfortable again is imperative. As a first step, you should always seek to ensure that your child’s mental well-being is a priority.
“Who is responsible?” is the key legal question in these cases and resolving it can be difficult due to the patchwork of laws that exists. However, recent legislative changes have made it easier to seek justice for sports organizations that abuse youth players. In some cases, the individual responsible will themselves be the target of a civil lawsuit. In other cases, it may include both the individual and the organization that employed them.
Establishing negligence and the culpability required to win a settlement or a court case can be difficult, especially in cases involving younger children. However, a legal team with direct experience with the law and similar cases can help you and your family take this important step.
There are several reasons to consider partnering with a firm such as HHJ Trial Attorneys to address the fallout from abuse within a sports organization. Potential outcomes include:
Every case is different, and so is every potential case outcome. The most detailed answers will come from attorneys informed on the situation and relevant case law.
Cases related to the abuse of children are immensely challenging, legally and emotionally. At HHJ Trial Attorneys, we understand the difficult position occupied by families in these situations. To support your needs, we offer a safe and calm environment for discussing the events and how to proceed with the potential for civil litigation. We believe survivors, and we believe that they deserve an advocate prepared to seek closure and compensation aggressively.