The damaging legacy of childhood sexual abuse often lasts a lifetime and, if you are a victim, you should consult a solicitor without delay. In one such case, a middle-aged man who was repeatedly abused by a sports teacher when he was a schoolboy has been awarded more than £1 million in compensation.
The man was 13 when the teacher began subjecting him to various forms of abuse, including rape. The abuse, accompanied by grooming and threats, continued on a frequent basis for a number of years. As a result, the man endured severe mental health difficulties and suffered a catastrophic breakdown when he was in his 40s. Only after receiving therapy did he feel able to report the abuse to the police.
After the teacher admitted multiple serious sexual offences and received a long prison sentence, the man commenced a claim for damages against him and the local authority that ran the school. The High Court upheld his claim and rejected arguments that it had been lodged too late.
In awarding him a total of £1,112,390 in damages, the Court noted that, as a result of the abuse, he has been stricken by feelings of self-loathing throughout his life. He has been unable to form close or intimate relationships and, although he was a bright pupil at school, the breakdown has gravely affected his professional career. His award included £85,000 for his pain, suffering and loss of amenity and more than £550,000 for his past and future loss of earnings.