Sex Abuse Law Firm Giving Back
The sexual abuse law firm of Corsiglia McMahon & Allard uses the law to make positive social changes. Under the leadership of attorney Robert Allard, the child sex abuse team devotes a considerable amount of time and attention to bringing awareness to the childhood sexual abuse epidemic created by pedophile educators and coaches. Virtually all of our pro bono efforts are devoted to ultimately eradicating childhood molestation from our society.
Toward that end, we have engaged in significant legislative efforts to make it safer for children from pedophile teachers at schools and to advocate for the rights of sex abuse victims.
Statute of Limitations on Childhood Sexual Abuse Lawsuits
Current California law places an arbitrary time limit (age 26) on childhood sexual abuse lawsuits. This time limit results in the protection of pedophiles and the institutions that enable their actions. The statute of limitations not only encourage predators and organizations to hide their behavior until the time limit expires, but they also deny survivors the ability to seek justice and heal.
Twice, we successfully persuaded the California state legislature to increase the age by which child sexual abuse victims would have to present claims from age 26 to the age 40. However, Governor Jerry Brown twice vetoed the legislation.
Stopping Child Molestation Revictimization
Recently, the Governor signed into law Senate Bill 755, which limits the time defense retained medical examiners have to examine sex abuse victims to 3 hours (previously there was no limit). This new law will significantly help children go through the defense medical evaluation process, which we have found over the years is abused by defense lawyers.
Closing a Loophole That Denied Justice to Child Sex Abuse Victims
We also closed a loophole, previously exploited by school districts in defending against childhood sexual abuse claims. Many school districts were trying to escape responsibility and deny child molestation victims the right to sue. Under the law, child sex abuse victims may bring a lawsuit until the age of 26. However, school districts were overriding the law by adopting contrary board policies to circumvent the legislative intent of CCP § 340.1, which provides that child sex abuse victims are exempt from the government claims act which places a six-month time limit.
State Senator Jim Beall contacted the California Legislative Counsel concerning this problem. The Legislative Counsel states that under CCP § 340.1, school districts “may not adopt a claim presentation procedure concerning claims for damages suffered as a result of childhood sexual abuse.”
School districts continue to use the loophole despite the intent of the law. This, in an effort to prevent children from seeking justice against schools who turned a blind eye to abuse. If your claim is rejected due to this legal loophole, give us a call.
Ridding Club Sports of Known Sexual Predator Coaches
Through our work in the sex abuse of athletes in Olympic Sports, featured in the Mercury News, we were able to get a complete revamping of the sex abuse policies and procedures. As a result of this work, more than 100 coaches are permanently banned from USA Swimming. For parents of children who participate in club sports, the new policies and procedures create a safer environment for children. For this, Allard received a “Person of the Year” award from a significant swimming media outlet.
Stopping the Silencing of Victims
The work that we did in USA Swimming was the inspiration for the enactment of CCP Section 1002 which prohibits the concealing of any factual information involving sex abuse claims including settlements. The new law publicly identifies pedophiles. It makes their identity a matter of public record analogous to the registered sex offender laws. For victims of sexual abuse, the new law no longer legally allows for silence as a condition of the settlement. Victims are free to reveal details of the agreement.
Our Work Going Forward
We are working on mandating “predator identification training” in all schools across California. Thus, anyone with access to kids on school grounds will learn to spot “red flag” warning signs of predatory behavior.
Other Pro Bono Work
Our pro bono work is not limited to childhood sexual abuse cases. We continue working with the legislature relating to the mandatory behind the wheel training for truck drivers. This proposed law stems from a just-concluded case involving Daniel McGuire, killed in July of 2014. The inexperienced truck driver was operating a poorly maintained truck which suffered a catastrophic brake failure.
In another case outside of the childhood sexual abuse arena, our sexual abuse legal team worked on behalf of the family of Audrie Pott. Audrie, a fifteen-year-old student, is sexually assaulted while passed out at a party. She is then photographed and humiliated at school by her assailants. Audrie committed suicide eight days after the assault. In pursuit of justice for the Pott family, attorneys Lauren Cerri and Robert Allard championed “Audrie’s Law”, expanding the legal definition of “rape” to protect those who are unconscious or developmentally disabled.
In short, this is our child molestation legal team's way to give back to the community.
If you a sexual abuse case, give our team a call at 408-289-1417. You may also contact us by email by using the contact form below. We're ready to help.
Corsiglia McMahon & Allard, L.L.P.
96. North Third Street, Suite 620
San Jose, CA 95112