£50,000 Compensation for Sexual Abuse in Local Authority Care

A Child Sex Abuse Case Study - Client Situation

Abuse Claims Solicitor Deborah Corcoran, who specialises in historic child abuse cases, was instructed to represent a man who was sexually abused as a child whilst in the care of a Local Authority.

Our client contacted us when he was 30 years old and told us he had been placed in the care of the Local Authority because he‘d been badly treated in his family home.

In the 1990s, he was sexually abused at the age of 11 by a trainee social worker whilst living at a children’s home. At age 15, he had made a complaint to the police, though it was unclear how far the investigation had gone.

Although the treatment received by the client from his parents was poor before going into the care of the Local Authority, the sexual abuse at the children’s home had a significant and damaging impact on him. Our client suffered Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSD) and depression, self-harmed and attempted suicide.

He was also wary of males and avoided contact sports, gyms and swimming pools, as well as situations where there might be physical contact.

How We Helped

This was a document heavy case, in which we obtained the client’s care records, and GP and hospital records. It was clear from the social care records that there had been 62 instances of prolonged contact between the client and the abuser.

Also noted within the care records was the significant concern by the Local Authority as to the abuser’s relationship with the client at the time. We obtained a medical report from a consultant psychiatrist who had a lot of experience in abuse cases. The psychiatrist read through all the client’s records and met with the client to discuss his history and what had happened whilst he was at the children’s home.

The psychiatrist produced a report setting out the history of the case, his opinion as to how the abuse had affected the client, a prognosis and recommended treatment. The psychiatrist’s report and all the client’s records then went to an experienced abuse Barrister, who produced written guidance advising on the claim in general and an opinion as to how much compensation the case was worth.

All the records and the report were sent to the Solicitor representing the Local Authority. The client made them an offer based on his Barrister’s opinion, but the offer wasn’t accepted. The Local Authority decided to obtain their own medical evidence and following receipt of this, a meeting was arranged between the client, his Barrister and the client’s medical expert to discuss the case in general and the defendant’s medical evidence.

The Outcome

Neither side could reach an agreement on settling the case, so a meeting was arranged between the client’s Barrister, and the Solicitor and representatives of the Local Authority. After a day of negotiations, a figure was reached that the client was happy with, with the claim being settled for £50,000 compensation.

We advised the client to set up a personal injury trust fund, which would allow the client to hold his compensation and still receive state means tested benefits. This enabled the client to use his compensation as intended and not lose his entitlement to benefits.

For more than 20 years, our Abuse Claims Solicitors have been helping abuse victims claim their legal rights. We offer a free confidential consultation and free legal advice for victims of abuse. Ask about Legal Aid or if we can deal with your case on No Win, No Fee basis.

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