A sexual assault allegation can carry a massive stigma, even when it is false. One person’s word can turn your world upside down. But you don’t need to feel helpless, even if the police or CPS look like they've made their minds up.
It’s our sexual assault solicitors' job to make sure that you are believed, and that you avoid being charged or convicted.
The moment a person becomes aware of a sexual assault allegation, the world stops. Anxiety, frustration or even anger are often never far away. A person can be afraid about career, family and even his or her freedom.
No matter what anyone says, a person who faces a false allegation is the justice system's biggest victim. As soon as an allegation is made, even the innocent can feel tainted by it, and feel judged as guilty until proven innocent, which is obviously unfair.
It can be worse for a person who has never faced a criminal case before. Not knowing how to deal with the problem makes it harder. People can be vulnerable to making naive and damaging mistakes in their case.
Police are often unsympathetic, even behaving as if what is happening to you is nothing personal, even as they are constructing the case against you.
Social services in some cases become involved which creates another headache.
An unfair aspect of sexual assault cases is that the disruption to a person's life starts without the case against them being tested by police first to see if it's true.
Police are under pressure to get convictions, but they also don't have the resources to do a thorough and efficient job.
Their default approach is to interview suspects first and only then follow up on the investigation. This takes months while the case hangs over the accused person, often affecting sleep and mental health. Even if the case is discontinued, there's no compensation for the stress of the investigation.
These cases often end up affecting family. Accusations can come from family or close friends. If there are children at home, police and social services are sometimes heavy-handed, even though they are supposed to be sensitive and professional.
To make matters worse, some lawyers sometimes take an apathetic 'wait and see' approach to defending the client, rather than actively trying to get the case stopped.
You don't have to accept that there is nothing you can do to fight back.
It starts with having sexual assault solicitors on your side who help you instead of just standing by watching the damage being done.
From the beginning, experienced sexual assault solicitors can set the tone of how you're treated by police and prosecutors. Your lawyers will listen to you to find out exactly what has happened. They will be sensitive and non-judgmental, and not assume that a witness against you must be telling the truth.
Sexual assault solicitors can explain to you the law and the process. Then you can decide together what choices you'll make. Do you answer questions in interview? Can the police be pressured to drop the case? Can the case be fought? These questions are important and need to be answered.
Specialist sexual assault solicitors can then take solid steps to improve the situation for you to have the best chance of beating the case and your life returning to normal.
A person who meets one of our specialist sexual assault solicitors quickly understands that they've come to experts who genuinely care about helping people get through this situation.
Our experienced sexual assault lawyers are totally focused on one result - getting your case stopped or won. We want to help you through it in a way which minimises the stress of the ordeal.
We work intensely to get to that goal, by negotiating with and pressuring the police or CPS, and investigating for ourselves. If it reaches court, your case has to stand out. We prepare you for trial and prepare the case against your accuser. Our sexual assault lawyers look past the allegation and look at motives, inconsistencies, and the background of the complainant.
Claiming to have suffered a sexual assault does not mean that the allegation must be accepted without corroborating evidence. We make sure that everyone in court understands this. We are never afraid to call out a liar.
Call us and speak to one of our specialist sexual assault solicitors. We can usually see you on secure videocall the same day or meet in person within 24 hours, with no obligation. Even if we can't help, we will try to point you in the right direction.
Don't lose hope - these cases can be won with the right approach and a client who is prepared to work with his or her lawyers.
Don't think that you don't need a lawyer to deal with the case because you've done nothing wrong. An innocent person has even more to lose. You should never speak to police without a lawyer.
Don't just keep the duty solicitor from the police station unless you've checked them out properly.
Don't share anything about the case on social media. The police do social media too.
Do confide in a family member or close friend so you have someone to talk to. Support through tough times is a must.
Go to your GP if you have problems with mental health or sleep. You don't have to share the details of what's going on.
If it’s a case we can take on, we’ll defend you at any police station or court in England or Wales. We have offices in London, Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester and Salford, and we’re happy to have a consultation with you on the phone or in person.