San Francisco Landlord Sexual Abuse Lawyer
Sexual abuse is a dangerous problem that can pervade all aspects of life, including what should be a safe haven: your home. Sexual assault, abuse, harassment and misconduct by your landlord can put you in a frightening position. You may feel trapped due to the power your landlord has over you to decide where you and your family live.
You can take a stand by taking your landlord to civil court in California and holding him or her accountable for the crime of sexual abuse. The plaintiff’s attorneys at Manly, Stewart & Finaldi can help you through the legal process with personalized advice, sound legal strategies and compassionate legal representation.
Why Choose Our San Francisco Landlord Sexual Abuse Attorneys?
- Our attorneys have decades of experience helping clients with landlord and property owner sexual abuse cases. We have achieved millions in settlements and verdicts for past clients.
- We have earned a reputation as America’s leading sexual abuse law firm. We can help you with even the most complicated landlord sexual abuse or assault claim in San Francisco.
- We keep our legal services affordable. We take landlord sexual abuse cases in San Francisco on a contingency fee basis, meaning no fees are charged unless we win.
Defining Landlord Sexual Abuse
Sexual assault and abuse are serious crimes in California under Penal Code Section 243.4. This statute says that it is against the law to touch the intimate part of another person while that person is unlawfully restrained by the perpetrator or an accomplice, and if the touching is against the victim’s will for the purpose of sexual arousal, gratification or abuse. It is also sexual abuse to touch the intimate parts of another person when that person is unconscious of the nature of the act.
Landlord sexual abuse can refer to any type of sexual misconduct, harassment, abuse or violence by a property owner who rents or leases the property to other people in exchange for payment. Landlords may commit sex crimes against tenants or rental applicants because of their positions of power. Landlords know that they have control over renters and lessors. Since landlords have something that tenants want – a place to rent – they can use this to groom, deceive, threaten or force tenants into sexual acts.
For example, a landlord may threaten to evict a mother and her children if she does not comply with his requests for sexual favors. In another example, a landlord may offer a person in need a place to live in exchange for sex acts rather than monetary rent. It is also against the law for a landlord to create a hostile living environment or housing situation for a tenant. This is one in which the tenant does not feel reasonably safe. This can involve offensive, inappropriate, intimidating or violent remarks or actions.
What Laws Protect You From Landlord Sexual Abuse?
Sexual abuse is a crime in California under any circumstances, regardless of the relationship between the abuser and victim. A person who commits a sex crime can face criminal penalties if convicted, such as fines and jail time. There are also civil consequences for landlords who abuse and harass their tenants. State and federal laws prohibit sexual harassment and abuse in housing. For example, the California Fair Housing Act prohibits sexual harassment on the basis of sex, nationality, disability, age and other protected classes.
In California, you have the right to file a complaint against a landlord or manager who is sexually abusing you or a loved one. You can bring your complaint to the California Civil Rights Department and they will investigate the issue and may take action against your landlord, such as stripping him or her of the right to rent properties. Note that you are safe from retaliatory action by your landlord for coming forward with sexual abuse allegations; your landlord legally cannot evict you or punish you in other ways if you inform the authorities of abuse or sexual harassment in San Francisco.
Steps to Take if You Are Sexually Abused by a Landlord in San Francisco
Your first priority as a victim of landlord sexual abuse should be your physical safety. Go to a safe place, such as a hospital or friend’s house, if you no longer feel safe in the home or apartment you are renting from the landlord. Tell someone what happened and write down a detailed description of the crime(s) while you can still remember everything. Go to a hospital without delay to request a sexual assault forensic exam, as this can treat any physical injuries as well as potentially collect evidence against the perpetrator.
Once you have received the care that you need and begun to cope with what happened, consider taking legal action. As a victim of sexual abuse or harassment at a place you are renting, you have the right to file a lawsuit against the abuser. You may also have the option of bringing a claim against a larger institution or organization, such as a property management company. Initiating a lawsuit can allow you to bring an abuser to justice. This can give you a sense of closure as well as result in financial compensation to reimburse you for related losses.
In addition, filing a lawsuit could lead to changes on an institutional level in the San Francisco community. The landlord or property manager may face penalties or be arrested for the crimes he or she has committed – potentially protecting other tenants from suffering the same fate that you did. Most sexual abuse and assault cases in San Francisco and all of California are resolved via insurance settlements, without the need to go to trial. Talk to an attorney about keeping your identity private throughout litigation.
Contact Our Landlord Sexual Abuse Attorney for Free Today
No one should ever have to withstand sexual harassment, abuse or assault from a landlord or property manager. If you or someone you know has been targeted for one of these heinous sex crimes, contact Manly, Stewart & Finaldi. Our lawyers will listen to your story and immediately go to work on helping you and your family. If you have grounds to file a civil lawsuit, we can help you demand justice and maximum financial compensation. Call (855) 204-3493 to begin with a free private case review in San Francisco.