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What does a Sexual Assault Attorney do?

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  • Written By: G. Wiesen
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 15 November 2016
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A sexual assault attorney typically works with victims of sexual assault and rape to assist them through making an official police report and any subsequent legal proceedings. This type of lawyer will often work with a victim to assist him or her in filling out paperwork and usually attempts to make the process of filing such a report, and any other legal paperwork necessary, as easy and painless as possible. A sexual assault attorney can also work for a private or public agency as an advocate for sexual assault victims, usually to provide assistance and general legal counsel.

The specific work a sexual assault attorney does in a particular case will usually vary depending on the nature of such a case; there are some general tasks he or she will likely deal with, however. One of the most difficult aspects of dealing with sexual assault after the assault takes place is filing a police report. For many victims, this is far too painful or embarrassing, and so too many assaults go unreported, making any type of prosecution more difficult. A sexual assault attorney can help work with the victim to make the process as painless as possible.

While the victim of a sexual assault will typically need to provide a statement in his or her own words, the sexual assault attorney can help fill out paperwork and follow up on any reports. The attorney will also typically work with a victim and help him or her as a particular case goes through investigation and into any criminal or civil trials following an arrest. While the act of confronting one’s attacker can be a highly cathartic experience for a sexual assault victim, it can also be terrifying. A sexual assault attorney will typically work with the victim to ease fears and distress as much as possible throughout a trial.

There is also a great deal of potential work for a sexual assault attorney outside of the actual legal process. An attorney with experience working on sexual assault cases can also work as an advocate for sexual assault victims. This often involves lobbying for increased penalties or more effective investigation methods for victims of sexual assault, as well as pursuing legal avenues to grant greater recourse for victims of sexual assault. A sexual assault attorney can also work as an advocate who works directly with victims, providing emotional support and legal advice, regardless of whether the victim wishes to file a police report.

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