Sexual Violence, Abuse, & Harassment: Nevada’s Laws

Personal Injury Lawyer

Pinches, touching, gestures, degrading remarks, jokes, indecent exposure, or any verbal or physical sexual contact all fall under the category of sexual harassment. The term “sexual assault” can cover a wide range of unwanted contact or behavior, including intentional touching of the victim’s genitals, anus, groin, or breasts, voyeurism, exposure to exhibitionism, undesired exposure to pornography, and such actions similar to these. These actions include when the victim cannot consent due to age, disability, being under the influence of drugs, medication, or alcohol, and can often be accompanied by a threat or even action of physical force by way of weapons, coercion, or intimidation. 

Specifically as a personal injury lawyer can explain, according to the Nevada Equal Rights Commission, sexual harassment is any unwanted verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Depending on the nature of harassment and severity, many courts may ask you to prove the conduct which occurred was severe enough to impair your working or living ability and you may even have to show a continued pattern of this behavior.

Personal Injury & Sex Abuse

Depending on the extent and severity of the injury, as well as if the charges being brought against the perpetrator are civil or criminal, there are a certain level of statutes of limitations and rules that must be followed to ensure that you can file a lawsuit. Both federal and state laws place limits on the time frame you must file your sexual harassment case, and ensuring these deadlines are met is crucial to obtaining recompense. Victims could receive compensatory damages from the defendant through the assistance of a personal injury attorney, which may include coverage for medical bills, lost wages and loss of future wages, as well as pain and suffering, and other damages. While prosecutors will file criminal charges against the harasser, a personal injury attorney can aid with receiving financial compensation for both emotional, physical, financial, and property distress and damages that the victim would not have received otherwise.

The Newly Added Statute:

According to updated laws within the Nevada Revised Statutes, there are a variety of different laws which are meant to protect victims and give them avenues they can pursue for collecting civil damages. In 2021, one statute in specific was added which seeks to further protect Nevada residents who have been victims of sexual abuse or exploitation:

  • NRS 41.13965: Action involving plaintiff who is victim of sexual abuse or sexual exploitation; judgment of conviction of perpetrator is conclusive evidence of sexual abuse or sexual exploitation; liability of person who benefits from sexual abuse or sexual exploitation; treble damages; exception from liability for certain establishments. 

This means that:

  • If the plaintiff is the victim of sexual abuse or sexual exploitation, a person has been convicted of a crime arising out of such sexual abuse or sexual exploitation of the plaintiff and the plaintiff commences a civil action against a person other than the person convicted of the crime is conclusive evidence in the civil action that the person convicted of the crime sexually abused or sexually exploited the plaintiff.
  • The defendant is liable in the altercation with the plaintiff for damages, if the person knowingly benefits in any way, from participation in a venture which that person knew or should have known has engaged in sexual abuse or sexual exploitation of another person.
  • A hotel, motel, or other establishment with more than 175 rooms available for sleeping accommodations for the public shall be deemed not to benefit, or to have gained a benefit, from the rental of a room in which the sexual assault has been taken place. 
  • Finally, “convicted”, “cover up”, “sexual abuse”, and “sexual exploitation” all have deeper definitions which are applied through different sections of the NRS

While many of the statutes in general contained within the NRS may sound confusing and complicated, the main underlying meaning is that these statutes have been revised to better protect the public and enable them to hold liable those who are responsible for the harm they endured.

While law can be complicated, hiring a personal injury attorney to assist and represent you can help you obtain the compensation you deserve. If you’ve been harmed due to the negligence of another regarding sexual abuse, violence, or harassment, a personal injury attorney can assist you. 

Thanks to Eglet Adams for their insight on the newly revised sexual abuse statute in Nevada.