You Are Here:

Sexual Abuse and Assault

When you suffered the humiliation, shock and pain of sexual abuse or sexual assault, the thought of recovering financial compensation may be the furthest thing from your mind. Often, however, you have a right to obtain restitution for your injuries, both physical and emotional. If you have been the victim of sexual abuse, assault or exploitation, contact sexual abuse attorney Joseph G. Klest to schedule a confidential consultation.

Klest Injury Law Firm represents sexual abuse victims throughout Illinois and the nation, including priest sex abuse.

$28 Million Verdict: In recent years, Klest Law Firm has obtained significant outcomes for the victims of sexual abuse an assault. An especially notable result is a milestone victory for sexual abuse victims involving a $28,000,000 verdict in the matter of Snyder v. Kenny. The verdict represents the largest civil sexual abuse verdict in Illinois history and is among the largest in the nation.

Sexual Abuse And Statutes Of Limitations

The biggest defense to claims of sexual abuse is the passage of time. Joseph Klest co-authored the 2003 Child Protection Act, which lengthened the statute of limitations allowing increased time for sexual abuse victims to claim civil damages in certain circumstances.

Klest Injury Law Firm focuses on recovering financial compensation for sex abuse victims, including those who have been subjected to sexual exploitation or sexual assault. He has never defended those accused of violating sex crime laws. He limits his representation in sex crime cases to sexual abuse victims and helps victims obtain compensation for all physical and emotional injuries.

From his years of experience representing sex crime victims, Mr. Klest knows that wrongful sexual conduct can occur in many places and many ways. Rape and child molestation can happen anywhere — in hospitals, hotels, parking lots, mental institutions, or college dormitories. Rapists or child molesters can be strangers, acquaintances, family members or persons in helping professions, such as counselors, teachers, coaches, priests or residence hall assistants.

Read this open letter from a sexual abuse victim and client of Joe Klest.

Institutional Sexual Abuse Coverups

Nowadays, the news reports are filled with stories concerning sexual abuse in the Roman Catholic Church and other religions, educational institutions and organizations. But for decades, these institutions preferred to deny the problem altogether. What usually happened was that the senior leaders of these institutions transferred the offending priests, ministers, rabbis, or teachers to another location. Sometimes the offenders ceased abusing victims, but often they were able to resume their abusive activities.

In the Catholic Church, the problem was not limited to the U.S. In recent years, news of sexual abuse coverups have come to light in Canada, Britain, Ireland, New Zealand, Chile and other countries. Why did the Church tolerate sexual abuse by clergymen for so long? One of the reasons is that management of the sexual abuse problems was left to local dioceses. That policy was supposed to have ended in 2001, when the Vatican required sex abuse cases to be reported to the central hierarchy of the Church. Yet some local dioceses and archdioceses continued the practice of covering up sexual abuse by transferring priests to other parishes. In August 2018, authorities revealed a "systematic coverup" of sex abuse by more than 300 priests in Pennsylvania.

It's likely that additional sex abuse coverups will be exposed in the future, not just in the Catholic Church, but also in Protestant denominations, among rabbis, and in primary, secondary and higher educational institutions.

What Can Victims Of Sex Abuse Coverups Do?

In the last few years, revelations of institutional sex abuse coverups have increased significantly. More than 3,000 sex abuse lawsuits have been filed against the Catholic Church alone. An organization called BishopAccountability says the Church has paid out more than $3 billion to victims of sex abuse.

It's important to stress that a lawsuit does more than just recover compensation for victims of sex abuse. A lawsuit is a powerful tool for obtaining justice and closure for those who have suffered such abuse.

Chicago native Joseph Klest has earned a national reputation for his work on behalf of sexual abuse victims. Mr. Klest has represented more than 500 abuse victims, seeking compensation, closure and justice for those who have suffered at the hands of individuals and institutions. He is a coauthor of Illinois's 2003 Child Protection Act – legislation that extended the statute of limitations thus enabling more sex abuse victims to seek compensation and justice for their suffering. Having counseled thousands of sex abuse victims in the U.S. and other countries, Mr. Klest understands the emotional burdens and suffering they must endure.

Free Consultation With An Attorney

Sex abuse victims are often hesitant to report the crime of sexual abuse and assault or sexual exploitation out of a sense of shame. For many of the same reasons, sex abuse victims are often reluctant to contact an attorney. We understand the stigma that comes with sexual exploitation and offers compassionate legal counsel in a confidential setting.

Contact us by calling 312-380-5467 to schedule a free consultation. If you cannot come to our offices in downtown Chicago or Schaumburg, we will come to you.