Our specialist Solicitors can help victims of sexual exploitation to claim compensation to help rebuild their lives.
Any victim of child sexual exploitation has rights, which we can help them enforce, so as to give them, hopefully, the justice they deserve.
The NSPCC defines sexual exploitation as a “type of sexual abuse in which children are sexually exploited for money, power or status”. That means they could be groomed online, trafficked into or within the UK or even tricked into thinking they’re in a loving relationship.
Contact our Abuse Claims Solicitors for free, initial legal advice and to find out how we can help you. Ask us about Legal Aid or if we can deal with your case on a No Win, No Fee basis.
There have been several scandals in the media about sexual exploitation in several towns and cities around the UK.
Each case reveals several common themes, including:
- Children/adolescents being deceived into believing that another person (“gang member”) is their friend.
- The children are vulnerable and open to “grooming” by an older and less naïve adult.
- The children are sometimes in care.
- The “gang member” who poses as a friend entices them with drink, and promises of love and affection
- Once “hooked”, the “friendship” turns into an excuse to exploit the child.
- Over a period of time, unspeakable crimes take place including rape, forced sexual acts, violence, threats of violence, often under the influence of drugs and drink.
- The children feel unable to escape the gang influence through fear of the consequences.
- The gang make threats against the children and their families if they dare to “tell”.
- The children often try to tell adults who are not only inside but outside their families.
- Those who hear the complaints either do not believe them, or fail to act out of ignorance, or bad judgement.
- If the complaint gets as far as the police, then in previous times, a lack of skill on the part of the investigative authorities has resulted in no action, or failed attempts at prosecution.
- Even if a police prosecution results, the gang continue to use techniques designed to undermine the proposed case such as:
- Intimidation of witnesses
- Threats of violence against the victims’ families.
- Threats against the victims
- Threats relating to the religious beliefs of certain Asian families concerning the prohibition of sex before marriage.
- Legal techniques at trial designed to undermine the will of the victim by the use of repeated and prolonged cross examination by legal counsel instructed by each gang member in a multi-Defendant trial - a repetition of the abuse itself in another form.
- Inevitably, the abuse causes harm, which can be classified into sexual, emotional and physical.
If you or a loved one have experienced any of the above, you may be able to claim compensation.
Our abuse specialists can handle sexual exploitation cases expertly and sensitively.
Frequently asked questions
- Do I Need a Solicitor?
The law surrounding abuse compensation claims is extremely complex, so it’s vital you speak to a Solicitor that specialises in abuse claims.
Even before a claim goes to Court, there are many potential pitfalls and hurdles to overcome, and special procedures to follow. A Solicitor with expertise in abuse claims is ideally placed to help you navigate this legal minefield and get the best outcome for you.
Simpson Millar is a member of the Association of Child Abuse Lawyers (ACAL) and we subscribe to its code of conduct. That means we’ll deal with your case in the way you’d expect it to be handled, with sensitivity and skill.
- What's Involved in Claiming Compensation?
The first step is to determine exactly who to make the claim for compensation against. This could be anyone from a residential care institution, or the body that runs it, to an individual who has committed abuse in the family home.
We’ll then determine how the claim is to be funded, many claims can be dealt with on a No Win, No Fee basis, we can then start to obtain as much evidence as possible to help prove the claim and assess its value.
If it’s then appropriate to begin Court proceedings, a formal legal claim begins in Court. In most abuse cases, there’s no need to go to a final trial and many compensation claims can be settled out of Court.
If it does proceed to trial, the person bringing the case may have to give evidence as a witness, but if this does happen, your Solicitor and a Barrister will provide advice and support at every stage.
- How Much Compensation Will I Get?
The exact amount of compensation depends on many factors such as how much has the abuse affected your life? How much money have you lost or likely to lose as a consequence of the abuse? Will you need extra support in the future?
That’s why in most cases we ask a medical expert to prepare a report detailing the harm inflicted, so we can value your claim and give you a good idea of how much compensation you can expect to receive.
Rest assured, we’ll do all we can to get you the maximum amount of compensation available to you.
- Why Claim Compensation?
Bringing legal action can’t wipe away the suffering you or a loved one has experienced, but there are lots of other reasons why it’s worth claiming compensation:
- For many, it’s the only recognition that what happened to them was wrong
- Legal action helps survivors accept that what happened to them wasn’t their fault
- Solicitors can aid the survivor’s recovery process, as the first people to hear and validate their experiences
- Compensation can help survivors get appropriate treatment, such as counselling, and rebuild their lives
- Public bodies have an incentive to follow correct procedures and act responsibly
- Speaking out on abuse can encourage Parliament to change the law
- Bringing legal action can ensure other people don’t have to suffer in the same way as you
- Compensation can recover money you would have received if not for the abuse
- How Will I Pay?
There are generally four options for paying for legal costs:
- Public Funding (Legal Aid)
- No Win, No Fee arrangements
- Legal Expenses Insurance
- Private Funding
Solicitors make charges based on an hourly rate. The overall cost of your case will depend on how much work is required, and a complex case will cost more than a straightforward case.
Most child abuse cases are complex, as they can involve investigations of records and events dating back many years. This can make child abuse cases very expensive to bring to Court.
Abuse cases will also usually include fees from experts including Psychiatrists, Doctors, Barristers and sometimes other specialists.
The legal system requires the losing party in an abuse case to pay the winning party’s legal costs.
Public Funding (Legal Aid) is currently available for child abuse claims where the person bringing the claim is financially eligible and where the case has legal merit.
If a person doesn’t qualify for Legal Aid, the Solicitor will consider whether it’s appropriate to enter into a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) or what is often called a No Win, No Fee agreement. It’s essential that you fully understand the terms of the agreement before committing to it, so you know exactly what expenses you could have to pay.
When entering into a No Win, No Fee agreement, it may also be a good idea to take out an After the Event insurance policy in case you end up having to pay the opponent’s costs.
Finally, you have the option of paying the Solicitor privately as the case proceeds.
For free legal advice call our Abuse Claims Solicitors
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Simpson Millar is a national law firm with over 500 staff and offices in Bristol, Cardiff, Lancaster, Leeds, Liverpool, London - Euston, London - Fleet Street, London - Teddington, Manchester, Morecambe and Southport.