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Is Domestic Violence Considered Sexual Abuse?

Domestic violence and sexual assault are often connected but unfortunately, most women do not separately report the sexual assault and it is just reported as domestic violence.

The statistics show that sexual assault is very often a part of domestic violence.

  • More than half of all sexual assault victims report that their intimate partner raped them at some time.
  • In the U.S., one in ten women stated they have been raped by their partner in the course of their lifetime.
  • Of the physical assaults reported by women, over two-thirds of the victims revealed they were also sexually assaulted. Alarmingly enough, over 80 percent of these women were sexually assaulted more than once.

The alarming fact is that sexual assault cases when the attacker is the victim’s intimate partner are rarely prosecuted or even investigated. The scary truth is that many perpetrators of sexual assault already have a record of domestic violence.

Victims of domestic violence, including those who are sexually assaulted by their spouse or partner, often feel helpless and trapped in their current situation because either they have children, do not have the funds, or are fearful that if they try to leave, it will only make the abuse worse.

If you are a victim of sexual abuse and/or domestic violence, please call the police and do whatever you can to remove yourself and your children from the situation. There are also organizations that you can call for help, such as the National Sexual Violence Resource Center.

Additionally, there are ways an attorney experienced in domestic violence and sexual abuse can help in ways you may not be able to do by yourself. Here’s how a lawyer can assist:

  • Seek a restraining order. It will be illegal for your abuser to make contact with you, keep the abuser at a specified distance from you, and they cannot carry or possess any firearms. The restraining order may also state that the abuser has to move away from the home shared with you.
  • An attorney can help you file for a divorce and assist you in the process for obtaining spousal support and dividing the property accumulated during your marriage.
  • A domestic violence lawsuit is something your attorney can file on your behalf. This is a civil suit that permits the victim of the abuse or domestic violence to be reimbursed for any monetary loss or medical expenses, including suffering and pain as a result of the sexual abuse/domestic violence.
  • Your lawyer can help you get custody of your children and obtain sufficient child support from the abusive parent.
  • Your personal injury lawyer  residents trust will be your best advocate and be your representative in court when dealing with the abusive partner. They will be the one to deal with the abuser’s legal counsel and procure and process the documents required by the court.

You do not have to go through this alone. Contact an experienced domestic violence/sexual abuse attorney to outline your next steps.  Do not wait until the next occurrence to take action.

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