Sexual assault is traumatic. The consequences can endure for months, years, or even longer.

Unsurprisingly, California takes sexual assault seriously – and so do we. We understand the impact that abuse has on victims and their loved ones. And we know the challenges you face when trying to hold your abuser accountable.

Even filing a lawsuit can seem overwhelming after sexual trauma. But we’re here to make the process as simple as possible. As experienced attorneys for sexually abused victims, we know what it takes to get justice for you. If you’re in need, don’t struggle alone.

Below, we explain how we help victims of sexual abuse when they need us most. And if you need our sexual assault lawyers, contact us now for a free case evaluation.

Sexual Assault Laws in California

Before we move on, it’s helpful to summarize sexual assault laws in California.

What Is Sexual Assault?

Sexual assault is any behavior or contact of a sexual nature that occurs without the recipient’s consent. While the most common crime that comes to mind is rape or forced penetration, there are many types of sexual assault.

Examples including touching, fondling, and forcing the victim to touch themselves.

Sexual assault can be a misdemeanor or felony. For example, aggravating factors, such as assaulting a person who lacks capacity to consent, could lead to felony charges.

But you might also bring a civil claim for your injuries and any losses sustained due to an attack. As civil law attorneys, we can help with all aspects of a civil sexual assault claim.

Types of Sexual Assault

Sexual assault takes various forms, including:


      • Elder abuse

      • Sexual harassment at work

      • Child molestation or abuse

      • Indecent exposure

      • Sexual violence and/or intimidation

      • Stalking (in some circumstances)

    At the May Firm, we proudly support victims of all forms of sexual assault. Whether you’re dealing with workplace harassment or elderly sexual assault, our law firm is here for you.

    Is Sexual Assault Always Physical?

    It does not always involve physical contact. Sexual assault can include non-contact actions such as flashing or exposing a minor to sexual acts.

    The impact of sex crimes goes far beyond any physical act. Victims face emotional and psychological scars for years after an event.

    Is Sexual Assault a Criminal or Civil Matter?

    It can be both. For example, you might have a criminal case against the perpetrator(s). And you may also be entitled to civil damages.

    Close up of justice statue scales legal concept for sexual assault attorney

    That’s why it’s so crucial to get legal advice from a sexual assault lawyer. They can explain how the claims process works and how it relates to any criminal case.

    Sexual Assault Statute of Limitations

    In CA, you usually have 10 years from the date of the last incident to make a claim. You may have longer (or less time) depending on what happened. Our sexual assault attorneys can explain what time limits apply in your case.

    Criminal sexual assault cases are subject to their own statute of limitations. For example, Section 801.1 of the CA Penal Code describes when prosecutors should bring charges for certain sex crimes.

    Time limits vary considerably depending on the crime and the age of the victim at the time of the offense.

    To protect your rights to make a claim, contact a sexual assault lawyer as soon as possible.

    What Do Sexual Assault Law Firms Do?

    If you’ve never hired a sexual abuse firm before, you might be unsure what they do. How can they help you – what can you expect after filing a civil lawsuit?

    The main role of a sexual assault attorney is to pursue justice for abuse victims. What’s required varies depending on the case, but an attorney can:


        • Explain a victim’s legal rights and options

        • Gather evidence to build a strong, compelling case

        • Liaise with therapists, counselors, and social workers to support a victim’s welfare

        • Protect privacy and confidentiality rights

        • Safeguard victims from retaliation

        • Advocate for clients in court

        • Answer questions about the legal process and procedures involved

      A sexual abuse attorney is dedicated to holding abusers accountable. This experience is what could improve a victim’s chances of success in court.

      Do I Need a Sexual Assault Attorney?

      Many victims are reluctant to come forward and get the legal help they deserve. They may also be nervous about hiring a sexual abuse lawyer.

      However, we are here to support you in your hour of need. It’s what drives us. It’s what we’re passionate about. But specifically, here’s why you should strongly consider hiring an experienced attorney for an abuse case.

      Legal Knowledge

      Sexual assault laws are complicated. There’s also the added complication that these cases can be civil and criminal in nature.

      Sexual assault lawyers know how these processes work alongside each other. They can help you understand the law, your rights, and how best to build a case. This may involve gathering evidence, liaising with doctors and mental health professionals, or finding witnesses.

      Whatever is required, an experienced sexual abuse lawyer can assist.

      Courtroom Experience

      Sexual abuse lawyers should do everything possible to resolve your case quickly. However, this should not be at the expense of getting you the settlement you deserve.

      If your case goes to court, a sexual assault attorney understands how the procedures work. They are well placed to guide you through the day-to-day processes, and they’ll explain the pros and cons of court trials. You should feel empowered to make decisions that are right for you.

      Support and Guidance

      Sexual assault lawyers know that your case is about more than just a settlement figure. It’s about justice. It’s about helping you move forward as far as possible. And it’s about holding the perpetrator accountable.

      During this time, you’ll experience a wide range of emotions and thoughts. We are here to listen to your concerns, answer your questions, and help you access support resources.

      Our compassionate team supports clients at every step of the legal process. No question is too insignificant for us to answer. We’re here to serve you and make you feel comfortable, reassured, and confident in your case strategy.

      Settlement Negotiations

      Sexual abuse cases are hard to quantify. After all, it’s impossible to put a price on the pain you’ve suffered. However, the goal of a civil lawsuit is to secure you the fairest amount of compensation possible.

      Judges gavel on block with sexual assault in gold writing and handcuffs at side

      Sexual abuse and assault lawyers know how to value cases. They can explain who you can sue and what damages you might claim. They will ensure that you sue for every possible financial, physical, and emotional loss.

      Our firm treats clients like family members. We will do our best for you when you need help the most. Reach out for a free initial case evaluation.

      Does Hiring a Local Abuse Attorney Matter?

      Yes. If you’re a sexual abuse survivor, you need a lawyer with state and local knowledge.

          • Sexual assault laws can vary widely between states. Out-of-state attorneys may not fully appreciate the intricacies of CA sexual assault laws.

          • Local attorneys understand their community. They have connections to local law enforcement, counsel, and support services. They can call upon this network to support clients in their time of need. It’s more challenging for out-of-town lawyers to provide this support.

        The May Firm works across California to champion sexual assault victims. We will use our local knowledge to your advantage.

        How Our Sexual Abuse Lawyers Help Victims

        We know that it’s hard to choose a law firm. And while we may not fully understand what you’ve been through, we do know how to help you move forward. Here’s how our sexual assault law firm supports the survivors who contact us.

            • Our lawyers listen. We want to help you get justice, so we care about your story. Our team will be respectful at all times.

            • We provide a clear explanation of the law as it relates to your case. We keep things simple so you can focus on what’s important – recovery.

            • With our experience, we know how to gather evidence to build your case. Our team will explain the strengths and weaknesses of your claim, and how best to proceed.

            • Our lawyers will respect your confidentiality rights. We can explain how confidentiality rules work in different settings, such as court, and what to expect.

            • We know that damages are hard to quantify. However, we ensure that we sue all parties responsible to help victims secure a fair settlement.

          It’s crucial that you get the emotional support you need right now. Please seek treatment immediately if you need psychological or physical assistance. Your health is always the priority.

          Free Consultation With Sexual Assault Attorneys in California

          Are you concerned about a sexual assault matter? Contact the May Firm.

          If you become our client, we will treat you with the respect and compassion you deserve. We will explain your legal rights and take every available step to protect your confidentiality. And we don’t just offer legal advice. We provide support when you need it most.

          Abusers should be held accountable for their actions. The sexual assault attorneys at the May Firm can help you pursue justice. We can help you move forward and overcome this challenge. All initial consultations are free, and we don’t charge anything unless we win your case.

          You have nothing to lose by calling our sexual assault law firm. Contact our experienced legal team today and begin your healing journey.

          Disclaimer: The content in this article is provided for general informational purposes only and may not represent the current law in the recipient’s jurisdiction. The article should not be interpreted as professional legal advice from The May Firm or the individual author, nor is the information intended to substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. The article, nor any of the information included, should not be used to act or refrain from acting without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice from a lawyer licensed in the recipient’s jurisdiction. Any reliance you place on such information is strictly at your own risk.