Coaches are supposed to be a source of guidance and support for the players they mentor. However, some coaches may abuse their relationship with a player in order to sexually prey upon the player. This is especially true if the player is a young child that has placed their trust in the coach. If your child was molested by their coach, consult with an experienced Hialeah attorney for victims of molestation by coaches.
Prosper Shaked Accident Injury Attorneys PA is prepared to help you and your family pursue justice against a coach that used their position to sexually abuse your child. To schedule a free legal consultation to discuss your claim, contact Prosper Shaked at (305) 694-2676.
Florida Laws Against Molestation
Florida has passed several laws against the molestation of minors. Many of these laws fall under Florida Statute 800.04(5), which formally labels the criminal charge of molestation as “lewd or lascivious molestation.” This statute protects children under the age of 16 that are forced to engage in sexual activity by an adult or even another minor.
In Hialeah, lewd or lascivious molestation is a strict liability crime. A strict liability crime is an offense that does not require a defendant to possess a certain mental state in order to be found guilty of the offense. Molestation is a strict liability crime so that offenders cannot escape liability with implausible excuses. As a result, attempts by a defendant to argue that a child initiated the sexual contact would not be permitted.
How a Coach Could Molest a Child
The state’s molestation statute makes illegal any touching of the breasts, genitals, or buttocks of a child under the age of 16. It is also illegal for a person to coerce a child to touch them in a sexual manner. However, there are other illicit actions that could make an offender guilty of molestation. For example, if a coach engaged in sexual intercourse with a child, they could be guilty of molestation, sexual assault, and other offenses.
Other examples of actions that could be considered molestation or a similar offense include:
- Forcing a child to view pornographic material
- Forcing a child to engage in sexual activity with another child
- Penetrating the genitals of a child with a foreign object
If you believe your child’s coach molested your child, you should contact law enforcement and notify the school of the situation. If criminal charges are brought against the coach, you can still pursue a civil claim against the coach and possibly the institution that employs them. To learn more about filing a civil lawsuit for a molestation claim, contact an experienced Hialeah molestation victims lawyer today.
Liability for a Molestation of a Child in Hialeah, FL
If you plan on pursuing a civil claim against the coach that sexually abused your child, you should be aware that there may be other parties that could be held liable for the offense. If the coach in question was employed by your child’s school or another institution, the employer could be held liable for the coach’s actions.
If a coach sexually abused your child while a school or other institution employed them, there is a possibility that the employer could be held vicariously liable for their actions. For vicarious liability to be triggered, the coach must have committed the molestation while they were performing tasks that were within the scope of their employment. For example, if a coach fondles a child while they are supposed to be teaching, the school could be liable for their actions.
Some institutions may attempt to argue that molestation committed by a coach falls outside of the scope of employment, which should invalidate a theory of vicarious liability. Fortunately, there are other claims available to a plaintiff. For instance, if a plaintiff has evidence that the institution was made aware of other molestation allegations against the coach that were ignored, the institution could be held liable for concealment of information.
Depending on the circumstances of your claim, there may be other arguments to make against an institution that allowed their coach to molest children they were supposed to care for.
Statute of Limitations for Molestation Lawsuits in Hialeah
The statute of limitations for a molestation claim can vary depending on the circumstances of the case. The statute of limitations determines the amount of time that a plaintiff has to file a claim against a defendant. In Florida, if a plaintiff has seven years from the date of their 18th birthday to file a claim against their abuser.
Additionally, if a minor under the age of 16 suffered sexual battery, they can pursue a lawsuit against the abuser at any time. However, this filing deadline only applies to cases where the molestation occurred on or before July 1, 2010.
If a minor just discovered the injury and the cause of the injury was sexual abuse, they will have four years to pursue their lawsuit. This provision was passed as Florida has recognized that many victims of sexual abuse will repress their memories to avoid reliving the trauma.
If you are concerned about when the statute of limitations elapses for your claim, contact an attorney as soon as possible.
Consult with an Experienced Hialeah Lawyer for Victims of Molestation by Coaches
If your child was a victim of molestation, you should contact an experienced Hialeah lawyer for victims of molestation by coaches. At Prosper Shaked Accident Injury Attorneys PA, we are dedicated to providing residents of Hialeah with the legal representation they deserve. You do not have to stand against a sexual abuser alone, contact Prosper Shaked at (305) 694-2676 to schedule a free legal consultation. You can also contact the firm online.