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Palatine sex crime injury attorneysThe Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) reports that one individual is sexually assaulted every 73 seconds in the United States. The effect that sexual violence has on the victim cannot be overstated. Sexual abuse victims often bear physical and psychological scars for the rest of their lives. If you or a loved one were the victim of sexual abuse, you should know that you may be able to hold the perpetrator accountable and recover damages through a personal injury lawsuit.

How a Personal Injury Case Differs From a Criminal Case

Sadly, many sexual abuse victims are abused by someone that they trusted. The perpetrator may be a family member, teacher, religious authority, community member, or another respected figure. This can often make it even harder for the victim to report the abuse. Some sexual abuse survivors can hold their abuser accountable through criminal proceedings. However, there is sometimes not enough evidence for the prosecution to secure a conviction against the perpetrator. Even if the criminal case is successful, a criminal conviction against an abuser does not offer the victim restitution.

A personal injury lawsuit is a civil case that may be brought in the absence of a conviction or in addition to a criminal case. The perpetrator does not need to be convicted of sexual abuse or another sex crime for the victim to bring a civil claim against him or her. In fact, it is possible to bring a successful civil case against the perpetrator even if the perpetrator was acquitted of criminal charges. This is because the standard of proof in a personal injury case is lower than that of a criminal case. Prosecutors must prove guilt “beyond a reasonable doubt” to get a criminal conviction. To hold a perpetrator civilly liable for the abuse, his or her actions must be proven "by a preponderance of the evidence,”—which means that the judge or jury must be convinced that the perpetrator was more likely than not to have caused the injuries alleged in the lawsuit. 

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Arlington Heights personal injury lawyersAs the winter season begins, Illinois residents are preparing to deal with cold and inclement weather. While most people will be taking precautions to protect themselves while at home or while driving, it can be impossible to foresee every potential hazard. This is especially true when it comes to snow and ice, which can greatly increase the chances of slip and fall accidents that lead to serious injuries. If you have been injured in this type of accident while you are in a public place or on someone else’s property, you will want to work with an attorney to determine how you can receive financial compensation.

Liability for Fall Accidents Caused by Winter Weather

During the winter, slip and fall accidents may occur on sidewalks or other outdoor walkways due to the accumulation of snow and ice. These accidents can also take place indoors at locations such as restaurants or stores due to wet floors caused by snow, sleet, or rain entering through a building’s doorways or water dripping from people’s shoes and clothes.

Property owners or tenants who are in control of a property are required to protect the safety of their visitors. If a property owner does not take steps to address hazards, they may be held liable for injuries that occur because of their negligence. For instance, a store owner may be responsible for slip and fall accidents that occurred because they did not clean up wet floors, did not use floor mats to prevent the accumulation of water near a building’s entrance, or did not provide warnings about slipping hazards.

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