Abuse Claims Against Social Services

If you have been the victim of sexual, physical or emotional abuse or neglect while under the care of social services our specialist Survivors Team could help you make a compensation claim.

Whether the abuse was suffered in a domestic or institutional setting or whether it was committed by a parent, visitor, foster carer or local authority officer, if social services owed you a duty of care and their actions or failings were a factor in your abuse, you may be able to claim civil financial compensation.

Thompsons is a highly respected and successful law firm with offices across Scotland. We work to ensure that you are supported throughout the claims process and can arrange to meet you at a location suitable to you. We can also meet with you alongside your support worker, friend, family member or significant other.

How does an abuse claim against social services work?

Thompsons regularly pursues abuse claims for what is known as vicarious liability on the part of social services and local authorities. In practice this means that you may be able to claim civil financial compensation if a local authority failed to manage or protect you appropriately.

Claims based on vicarious liability were initially founded on the notion that employers could be held liable for the actions of an employee during the course of their employment. The principle of vicarious liability was then extended to include claims for cases of sexual abuse that were carried out by an employee during the course of their employment. This means that if you have suffered at the hands of a social worker, healthcare professional, teacher or other party with pastoral responsibility, the individual's employer could be held liable for the payment of financial compensation.

Claims for historic abuse

Until recently, survivors of historic abuse could not make claims for their suffering. This was because of the strict the three-year time limit that applied to cases of abuse.

However, with the passing of the Limitation (Childhood Abuse) Scotland) Act 2017 it became possible for the survivors of historic childhood abuse to claim compensation in the civil courts, even if the abuse occurred as long ago as 1964 or if they were under the age of 18 when it occurred. This helped correct a glaring deficiency in the law; typically survivors are unlikely to be quick to seek compensation as the trauma is often too much to contemplate for a significant amount of time.

If you suffered abuse prior to 26th September 1964, please see our page on Abuse Law for Survivors.

Thompsons survivor abuse claims solicitors

Thompsons' survivor abuse team can help you make a claim for compensation even if the abuse occurred many years ago or if the perpetrator is dead.

You won't need to pay us anything at the outset of your claim. No charges will be made until your case is settled and only if you are successful, and all fees and costs will be explained clearly and transparently in advance. You can find out more about the process on our Historic Abuse Claims Process page

Our abuse claim team is led by three of Scotland's most experienced solicitors: Patrick McGuire, Laura Connor and Lindsay Bruce. All three have close working relationships with Scotland's leading abuse charities and also with the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry.

If you would like to speak with our dedicated team of specialist solicitors about making a social services child abuse claim call us today, in confidence.

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