ATB welcomes Tasmania’s Commission of Inquiry and warns against the Redress Scheme Arnold Thomas & Becker recently welcomed the Commission of Inquiry into the Tasmanian Government’s responses to child sexual abuse in institutional settings. Arnold Thomas & Becker lawyer Kelly Schober said, “the inquiry has provided some hope for a response from the government that recognises how they’ve been let down and that finally their complaints are being investigated.” “We have pushed for the implementation of various recommendations which we believe are absolutely fundamental to ensuring that these very grave and beyond devastating state failings are never ever repeated and to ensure those children in the state’s care are safeguarded and protected.” But Ms Schober warned survivors to be “wary of the government’s Redress Scheme as it offers a cap of $150,000 to individual victims, whilst civil litigation with the support of a specialist abuse lawyer can provide millions in compensation to the individual.” “Anyone who accepts an incredibly low and unfair redress payment forever loses the one chance they have to receive fair and proper compensation – this is why we urge victims to speak to an experienced abuse lawyer.” Arnold Thomas & Becker are leading abuse lawyers representing over 1000 institutional child abuse survivors. Empowering Survivors: Navigating Institutional Abuse with Arnold Thomas & Becker Institutional abuse, especially when it involves sexual abuse, is a harrowing reality that has far-reaching effects on survivors. Acknowledging that no amount of compensation can fully heal the wounds of survivors, our team at Arnold Thomas & Becker are committed to securing rightful compensation to aid in the healing process. If you’re a survivor of such abuse, you’re not alone. This blog sheds light on the complexities of the National Redress Scheme, the importance of overcoming time limits, and the courage it takes to come forward. “Pursuing a claim can give the survivor a strong sense of empowerment, validation and justice,” said Ms Schober. “We continue to do all we can to protect survivors and assist them with their claims – we encourage anyone who may have experienced institutional abuse to seek the advice of an experienced lawyer.” Questioning the National Redress Scheme The National Redress Scheme, initiated in 2018 as a response to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, aims to provide redress to survivors of institutional child sexual abuse. However, there are concerns surrounding its limitations. With a maximum compensation cap of $150,000, survivors may feel short-changed, especially considering the profound and lasting impact of the abuse they endured. This meagre amount doesn’t encompass the full scope of survivors’ pain and trauma. Accepting compensation through the Redress Scheme forfeits survivors’ ability to pursue civil damages claims against the specific institution responsible for their abuse. At Arnold Thomas & Becker we aim to highlight this limitation and urge survivors to seek legal guidance from our trusted team before accepting any Redress payment. Why talk to a lawyer at ATB? Our legal experts at Arnold Thomas & Becker understand that survivors deserve comprehensive compensation that acknowledges the extent of their suffering. Through civil litigation, survivors gain the agency to hold institutions accountable for their actions and receive compensation that truly reflects their pain and suffering. Over the past two years, Arnold Thomas & Becker has secured average settlements of around $900,000 per abuse claim, with multiple settlements exceeding $2 million. These outcomes bring life-changing relief to survivors, offering them a chance to rebuild their lives. Overcoming silence and time limits The statistics on sexual abuse are sobering. The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse revealed that children were abused in over 4,000 institutions. Despite this staggering number, a significant percentage of victims – up to 60% – never disclose their abuse. Survivors often take an average of 23.9 years to come forward, and 22.6% of adult victims who disclosed their abuse doubted they would be believed. At Arnold Thomas & Becker we acknowledge the immense courage it takes for survivors to break their silence and come forward. Removing time limits for sexual abuse claims in 2015 opened doors for survivors to seek justice even decades after the abuse occurred. In 2018, further legal changes prevented religious institutions from using the ‘Ellis Defence,’ a strategy that hindered compensation claims. These legal developments pave the way for survivors to access the justice they deserve. Supporting survivors every step of the way At Arnold Thomas & Becker we stand as a beacon of support for survivors of institutional abuse. Our legal team’s empathetic approach ensures that survivors are heard, respected, and empowered throughout the legal process. With extensive experience in negotiating substantial settlements and an understanding of the trauma survivors endure, we are uniquely positioned to help survivors navigate the complexities of seeking compensation. Survivors of institutional abuse deserve a path toward healing and justice. Our commitment to securing substantial compensation for survivors of abuse reflects our determination to champion survivors’ rights. By raising awareness about the limitations of the National Redress Scheme, advocating for civil litigation, and creating a safe space for survivors to come forward, Arnold Thomas & Becker is a steadfast ally for those who have endured unspeakable trauma. If you’re ready to explore your legal options and secure the compensation you deserve, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team at Arnold Thomas & Becker at 1300 333 300. Remember, you’re not alone – help and justice are within reach. For more information, visit our Institutional Abuse page.