Our firm settled a claim on behalf of a woman who was sexually abused by her male psychologist. The case was settled for a confidential, yet substantial sum.
Woman in 20’s Wins Settlement after Affair with Therapist
Our client was a young woman in her early 20’s who began seeing the psychologist to help her deal with the emotional aftermath of an amicable yet painful divorce. Almost immediately, the therapy sessions turned flirtatious, with the therapist quickly confessing his emotional and physical attraction to the woman. Over the ensuing months, the relationship became more involved, with the parties exchanging poetry, photographs, gifts, and other tokens.
After several more months, the therapist terminated the counseling relationship but continued to see the woman outside of his office. Eventually, he had sexual intercourse with her. When the relationship became even more intense, he agreed to leave his wife but later backed out. The relationship then began to deteriorate, and the woman eventually came to realize that the relationship was wrong.
It is very common for a victim to avoid bringing a claim against a therapist, or even reporting him or her, because of the victim’s powerful belief that they were a willing participant in the relationship. In light of the inherent imbalance of power in the relationship, nothing could be further from the truth.
Psychiatrists and Other Therapists Prohibited from Having Affair with Patient
The typical victim comes to the therapist for help and it is ‘a given’ in these cases that the victim is emotionally vulnerable. It is because of this vulnerability of the victim that the law in almost every state protects the victim by making any sexual contact by a therapist actionable in a court of law for money damages. Furthermore, the law recognizes that the victim is deemed incapable of consenting to the relationship. The damage rendered by such a therapist is often severe, with the victim requiring more intensive counseling, and with collateral damage to the victim’s marriage or job.
It is our hope that cases such as this one will help women realize that they are not willing participants in their sexual relationships with the church priest, psychologist, or therapist, and that they have valid legal recourse.
Read more therapist patient abuse lawsuit information.