Representing Children and Adult Victims of Childhood Sex Abuse
“Giving Victims a Voice”
Sexual abuse attorney Frank Bartlett Jr. provides representation, assistance, and much-needed closure to victims, including adult victims of childhood sexual abuse or molestation. Childhood sex abuse often comes with guilt or fear on the part of the victim, who may have found it easier to say nothing than to face what may have literally been an unspeakable scenario. The victim may silently carry those same feelings into adulthood until he or she is finally able to speak up to help the healing process. These sex abuse acts are often committed by trusted people in the community such as priests, doctors, teachers, coaches, medical professionals, Scout leaders, and even family members. The victims often feel that they are alone and that people won’t believe their stories. We will believe you, and help you and your family members who are still suffering from abuse issues that may have happened years ago. Our intent is to empower the voice that has so long been silent and to maximize your compensation. Our goal is to help victims of sexual molestation and sexual abuse become survivors and move on with their lives.
Attorney Bartlett is our lead sexual abuse lawyer and has represented many sexual abuse victims over his career. He has brought numerous cases to trial and has successfully argued several cases before the Connecticut Appellate Court and the Connecticut Supreme Court. He served as lead counsel in one of the representative cases selected for trial in the largest sexual abuse case against a medical professional in Connecticut history. The case was against St. Francis Hospital whose head of endocrinology, Dr. George Reardon, photographed and fondled many of his young patients. In 2007, Reardon’s hidden pornographic library of child patients was found in his former West Hartford home. Attorney Bartlett was very fortunate to have worked with the late Attorney Clark of Seattle, one of the nation’s leaders in helping eliminate sexual abuse in scouting. Attorney Clark was co-counsel with Attorney Bartlett on several Boy Scouts of America abuse cases in Connecticut. For over thirty years Attorney Clark represented hundreds of child molestation victims in litigation against what he called “institutions of trust” — the Catholic Church, and the Boy Scouts of America. He helped force mammoth and beloved organizations to concede to decades of sexual abuse within their ranks, or to efforts to keep knowledge of abuse secret from the public. The knowledge Attorney Bartlett gained by working with Attorney Clark has been invaluable in representing sexually abused here in Connecticut.
We have been asked the same questions by many clients. Below are the answers to some of these important sexual abuse questions.
1) How much is my sexual abuse case worth?
The value of every case is different and the maximum value can only be determined by an experienced attorney. Many factors go into determining the true value and these will be discussed in detail with you. While every case is different, and past results do not ensure future success, we are very proud that we have secured millions of dollars in settlements and awards for our sexually abused clients. Clients have told us that the closure this provides is more valuable than the money. Below is a sampling of the types of sexual abuse cases we have successfully handled for past clients, and where allowable the results we have obtained.
Through the civil justice system, we seek validation for our clients. As one example, Attorney Bartlett won a $2,750,000 verdict for a woman that was molested as a child by her mother’s boyfriend forty years ago. Despite the fact that there were few records to support her claim, the jury sided with Attorney Bartlett.
Bartlett Legal Group has represented many Boy Scouts who have been sexually abused by Connecticut Scout Leaders such as Alton Parady in southern Connecticut, and David (Dirk) Davenport of Madison, CT.
John Roe #1 v. Boy Scouts of America, et al. – $1,000,000 judgment obtained against a Boy Scout scoutmaster on behalf of a young boy who suffered sexual abuse at scouting events and at a local Boy Scout camp.
2) What if I don’t have records?
The majority of our sex abuse cases deal with adult victims of sexual abuse as children. The abuse often happened many years ago and there may be very few records associated with the events. Attorney Bartlett and his team of experts work together with you to piece together the facts and records. If your case goes to trial we will not pass you on to another attorney. We have the trial experience to take your case to court and up through the appeals process if necessary. We will be by your side through the entire process. Continuity is critical to obtaining the best possible outcome.
3) What types of sexual abuse cases have you handled?
We represent clients who have been sexually abused by Boy Scout leaders, priests, medical professionals, family members, teachers, and others. Attorney Bartlett is our lead trial attorney dealing with sexual abuse cases. He will handle your case every step of the way, in every court required. He has handled many types of sexual abuse cases, in the courtroom and through arbitration. This is a specialized form of legal advocacy that should be handled by an attorney with experience in this field of law. We understand the medical, psychological, and legal issues involved in a sexual abuse claim. We know how to build strong, convincing cases designed to secure deserved compensation for our clients. Child sex abuse cases often settle without going to court.
4) Do I need an attorney if I’m going to settle?
You don’t need an attorney to settle. You do need an attorney to reach the best settlement for you. Countless hours of work and investigation go into every case. Each case at Bartlett Legal Group is handled as if it will eventually go to trial. This hard work and our reputation will help you receive the maximum value for your case. If Bartlett Legal Group accepts your case, you will not be shuffled off to an associate. If the case goes to trial you will not be sent to another firm.
5) How long do I have to initiate a lawsuit? What is the Connecticut statute of limitation associated with childhood sexual abuse?
Although Connecticut law does have strict statutes of limitations for filing criminal charges, most people don’t realize that childhood sexual abuse and other types of civil claims may still be filed, in many instances, at any time before the victim reaches age 48.
Also, Conn. Gen. Stat. §52-577e states:
There is no statute of limitations for suits against abusers who have been convicted of sexual assault in the 1st degree. Our attorneys can evaluate the facts and circumstances of your particular case to determine if you are still within the applicable statute of limitations.
There is no statute of limitations for suits against abusers who have been convicted of sexual assault in the 1st degree.
6) What should I expect at our first meeting and how long will it take?
At the initial consultation, clients receive immediate validation and support. Through discussion with you, we begin to understand the events that led you to seek legal counsel and the pertinent details about the incident(s). Initial consultation appointments are generally one hour in length. When you become our client, you are no longer alone in this journey for validation and closure. Our clients have told us of the feeling of great relief they have experienced when they finally understood that the abuse was not their fault. The focus of our work together is to hold the abuser accountable while helping survivors take a courageous step in the direction of justice and emotional freedom. During the initial confidential consultation, Mr. Bartlett discusses the need for treatment and counseling ahead of a complex and often lengthy legal process. Your well-being is the most important factor.
7) Will my secret be made public?
One thing we repeatedly hear is the need for confidentiality. We understand this and do everything possible to keep your matters private. If we are required to represent you in court we will not use your name but will use an alias such as John Doe if that is what you want. We have found that almost all cases are settled rather than go to trial. A November 2015 article in the Connecticut Law Tribune stated that over 95% of these cases settle before going to trial.
8) Can the medical issues I’m having be related to the abuse?
Victims of sex abuse or sexual assault often suffer lifelong issues. Many of our sexually abused clients suffer from a variety of illnesses that are commonly related to past sexual abuse such as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, drug and alcohol abuse, eating disorders, and difficulty maintaining a long-term relationship. Understandably, the sexually abused often have trust issues. Because childhood sexual abuse can leave a severe emotional scar on a person’s life, Attorney Bartlett encourages his clients to seek the treatment and counseling they need if they have not done so already.
Effects of Sexual Abuse on Victims
Victims of sex abuse or sexual assault often suffer lifelong issues. Many of our sexually abused clients suffer from a variety of illnesses that are commonly related to past sexual abuse such as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, drug, and alcohol abuse, eating disorders, and difficulty maintaining a long-term relationship. Understandably, the sexually abused often have trust issues. Because childhood sexual abuse can leave a severe emotional scar on a person’s life, sex abuse Attorney Bartlett encourages his clients to seek the treatment and counseling they need if they have not done so already.
We represent clients with sexual abuse by Boy Scout leaders, priests, medical professionals, teachers, and others
Please click on one of these links for specific information.
Working with Child Sexual Abuse Victims and Families
Perpetrators of sexual abuse often utilize authority positions and the status and trust associated with those positions to befriend and exploit innocent children. Some examples are,
Educational institutions The Indian Mountain Boarding School in Lakeville, Choate Rosemary Hall in Wallingford, or Newington High School to name a few.
Religious institutions such as the Catholic Church or the United Church of Christ.
Civic organizations such as the Boy Scouts of America
Foster Parent and Family Member Sexual Abuse Lawyers
Foster parents wishing to open their homes to children should be thoroughly vetted prior to any licensure. Once a child is placed, Connecticut state agencies have the responsibility to provide a licensed and trained social worker to visit the home regularly. Part of that training involves identifying sexual abuse and molestation. Suspicion should lead to immediate investigations and possible removal of the child. Failure of the state’s representative to act not only allows the abuse to continue, but it also puts the state at risk of legal action along with the abusing foster parent.
At the initial consultation, clients receive immediate validation as we spend time with you to understand the events that led you to seeking legal counsel. In cases involving a family member, treatment and counseling is necessary for the victim, abuser and other family members. The focus is to hold the abuser and state agencies, when appropriate, accountable. When abuse is committed by a foster parent or close relative, additional issues need resolution. Preserving familial relationships are vital. The future of a family unit is often at stake and requires attention as well.
Unwanted sexual contact by a family member adds a particularly emotionally charged dynamic. Clients are encouraged to seek the treatment and counseling they need, either ahead of any legal action or running concurrently with a lawsuit.
We represent those sexually abused as children by priests. You are not alone. Bartlett Legal Group can help.
We have learned much over the years from our clients about the devastating long term effects and far-reaching consequences of childhood sexual abuse. We have seen how lives have been drastically changed due to the use of drugs and alcohol in an attempt to deal with abuse. We help you understand that this was not your fault and that you are not alone. Clients have expressed great relief by finally talking about their experiences, taking action, and having justice served. Our firm’s motto is “Giving Victims a Voice”. We often hear, why isn’t anyone doing anything? Bartlett Legal Group is doing something. We have successfully represented many children and adults sexually abused as children. We can help you, and you can help us make a difference. Our attorneys are parents and believe that a child is the most precious gift possible. Stealing your childhood by sex abuse can never be fully compensated. We will do our very best to help you get repaid for your losses, both physical and emotional.
The movie Spotlight gives an excellent account of how an entire city, country and world looked the other way concerning sexual abuse by priests. It is very common for those in power and someone is known to the child to be the abuser. Stranger Danger is not the only thing to teach our young. Over 93% of those abused knew the abuser. Spotlight is a movie worth seeing. The movie shows the complexities of dealing with abusers that are respected in the community. For more information about the making of Spotlight go to www.bostonglobe.com/arts/movies/spotlight-movie
Call us now at 203-439-7717.
Call Frank Bartlett, now to confidentially discuss your case. There is no obligation.
9) What are the numbers associated with sex abuse in the Catholic Church and are they True?
There are many statistics concerning the thousands of priests in the United States accused of sex abuse. There are reportedly over 44 priests accused of molestation or sexual abuse in Connecticut alone. At Bartlett Legal Group our main concern is you, and how we can help make your life better. Again, the number we are concerned with is one. You.
Below are numbers reported by Frontline PBS provided by the Catholic Church in 2012.
There are several organizations that are working towards an answer to this worldwide epidemic in the church.
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests
CBS News May 2014 – The Vatican revealed how many priests were defrocked for sex abuse since 2004. https://www.cbsnews.com/news/vatican-reveals-how-many-priests-defrocked-for-sex-abuse-since-2004/
Empowering Victims Of Sexual Abuse By Medical Personnel
Medical professionals or doctors who commit sexual abuse against helpless patients should be punished by our criminal justice system. Licensing boards can take action as well if a complaint is filed. Yet, prison sentences, sex offender registration and the loss of professional licenses do little, if anything to promote the healing of victims. The attorneys at Bartlett Legal Group focus on protecting the rights and looking out for the best interests of their clients victimized by a trusted doctor.
Giving Sexual Abuse Victims A Voice
Our goal is to transform something that was beyond your control into empowerment. Nonconsensual sexual contact by a medical professional not only violates the American Medical Association’s Principles of Medical Ethics, but it also breaches the trust placed in doctors, nurses or anesthetists.
The basis for civil action is determined by the Sexual Abuse or misuse of the relationship between a licensed health care provider and a patient. While being proactive in putting our clients in control by holding an abuser accountable through a legal claim, lawsuits are not always the initial step.
For information on sexual abuse by Boy Scout leaders please click here.
The Bartlett Legal Group personal injury law firm is centrally located in Cheshire, Connecticut. We handle sexual abuse cases across the state in every town. We take referrals of sex abuse cases from attorneys across the country. Don’t settle for less, choose Bartlett Legal Group.
Sources: above notes, attachments, https://www.cga.ct.gov/2013/rpt/2013-R-0162.htm
Our mission at Bartlett Legal Group is to be the best sexual abuse law firm in Connecticut and to give victims a voice.
Our personal injury sex abuse attorney has extensive experience with many forms of sexual abuse cases, in the courtroom and through arbitration. He is knowledgeable with the laws, procedures, and intricacies that pertain to these cases. This is a specialized form of legal advocacy that should be handled by an attorney with experience in this field of law. We understand the medical, psychological, and legal issues involved in a sexual abuse claim. We know how to build strong, convincing cases designed to secure deserved compensation for our clients. Child sex abuse cases often settle without going to court, especially cases against large institutions that have dealt with our firm on other cases. If your case does go to court confidentiality may be maintained by the use of an alias such as John Doe under some circumstances. This can be discussed at our first consultation.
A Victory for Victims: NY Advocates for Childhood Sexual Abuse Victims With Signing of Child Victims Act
Sexual abuse victims and advocates in New York have won a major victory with the passing of the Child Victims Act. This series of pro-victim amendments focus on expanding the statute of limitations for criminal and civil suits while also providing all sexual abuse victims an opportunity to bring forth a claim against any person or institution.
The primary provisions of the Child Victims Act relating to sexual abuse in New York are:
- The establishment of a one-time, one-year window (starting August 14, 2019) during which victims can file a lawsuit against their abuser, no matter when the abuse occurred or if the case had been dismissed due to prior laws
- A five-year extension, from 23 years of age to 28 years of age, in the amount of time a child has to file a criminal lawsuit against their abuser before the statute of limitations goes into effect
- The establishment of 55 years of age as the maximum age at which a victim can file a civil lawsuit against their abuser before the statute of limitations goes into effect
- The elimination of notice of claim requirements that had previously prevented victims from filing lawsuits against institutions accused of systemic abuse
- An increase in required judicial training on the topic of childhood sexual abuse
Sexual abuse survivors and supporters have been fighting to protect children and humanize these laws for many years and are encouraged to see government officials helping to make a difference. One important advocate, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, expressed support for the Child Victims Act by attending the vote in late-January then signed the bill into law on February 14th after overwhelming approval from the New York state House and Senate.
What to Expect at Your Consultation with our Firm and Beyond
At the initial consultation, clients receive immediate validation and support. Through discussion with you, we begin to understand the events that led you to seek legal counsel and the pertinent details about the incident(s). Initial consultation appointments are generally one hour in length. When you become our client, you are no longer alone in this journey for validation and closure. Our clients have told us of the feeling of great relief they have experienced when they finally understood that the abuse was not their fault. The focus of our work together is to hold the abuser accountable while helping survivors take a courageous step in the direction of justice and emotional freedom.
Through the civil justice system, we seek validation for our clients. As one example, our sex abuse attorney won a $2,750,000 verdict for a woman that was molested as a child forty years ago. Despite the fact that there were few records to support her claim, the jury sided with Attorney Bartlett.
Bartlett Legal Group represents and has successfully represented Boy Scouts who have been sexually abused by Connecticut Scout Leaders such as Alton Parady in southern Connecticut, and David (Dirk) Davenport of Madison, CT. For additional information on Boy Scout sexual abuse click here.
Attorney Bartlett was the lead sexual abuse attorney who negotiated a confidential settlement in one of the representative cases that resulted from the largest documented case of serial pedophilia and child pornography in Connecticut state history in which a trusted hospital doctor was fondling and taking inappropriate pictures of his child patients. Don’t think you don’t have a case.
Call 203-439-7717 to schedule a free consultation. If you or anyone you know has been abused let us help.
Sources: above notes, attachments, https://www.cga.ct.gov/2013/rpt/2013-R-0162.htm
Our mission at Bartlett Legal Group is to be the best sexual abuse law firm in Connecticut and to give victims a voice.