The timeline for a therapy abuse lawsuit to reach its conclusion could range from a few months to several years. The length of time for the case will depend on the complexity of the case and the challenges of proving your claims.
When you feel like your therapist is performing actions during your treatment that are causing mental anguish for you, this could be a case of abuse. Recognizing the abuse is only the first step when seeking a financial judgment against the abuser.
Recognizing that Abuse Is Occurring
As you are undergoing therapy, you may feel like your therapist is not helping you. Instead, you may believe the therapist is taking advantage of you, leading to abuse.
If you think a therapist is violating the American Psychological Association (APA) Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct, this could be a sign abuse is occurring. Some common signs of abuse from therapists include:
- Emotional manipulation
- Breaches of your confidentiality
- Verbal abuse
- Physical abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Prescribing drugs with an intent to cause you to end up with a dependency
- Contacting you outside the office
- Extending sessions well beyond the appointed timeframe
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Seeking Help from a Therapist Abuse Attorney
One of the key steps along the timeline of starting a therapy abuse claim is contacting an attorney who specializes in these types of cases.
Understanding if you have a case against the therapist can be extremely tough when you are in the middle of receiving treatment. A lawyer can take a fresh look at the facts in your case to try to determine what kind of claim you may have.
This process of recognizing the abusive situation and choosing to take legal action can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few years. Deciding to contact an attorney about your abusive situation is never easy, but it can be helpful to have a lawyer look at the facts of the case.
Filing a Complaint Document with the Court
After going over your options with the attorney, if you decide you would like to continue with the claim of abuse against the therapist, your attorney likely will file an official complaint in court against the therapist.
Negotiating with the Therapist
After taking on the case, your attorney will interview you, read your general medical records, consult with medical experts, and review the therapist’s records to see what happened. At this point, your lawyer should be able to give you an estimate of the length of time a therapy abuse lawsuit could take and your chances of winning an award.
Your attorney will handle all correspondence and telephone calls with the insurance company on your behalf. The insurance company representing your therapist may contact us to see if we will be willing to accept a settlement offer.
Keeping You Informed About the Progress of the Case
Your therapy abuse attorney should keep you informed about how your case is progressing at every step along the way. You should never wonder where the case stands.
When the insurance company makes an offer, you and your attorney can discuss the pros and cons of accepting it. Should you choose not to accept the offer, the negotiations can continue, or you can decide to end negotiations and take the case to trial.
This negotiation phase can last anywhere from a few months to a few years. Negotiating sessions that last for a year or more are common in cases like this, however, because of the complexity of the situation.
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Presenting Your Side of the Story
As the negotiations move forward, you probably will have to give a deposition. In the deposition, you will present your side of the story under oath. Your attorney can work with you ahead of time to prepare you to answer the questions the insurance company’s attorneys may have for you.
Testifying at Trial
Although most cases like this settle out of court, it is possible your lawsuit could end up at trial. Your attorney will represent you in court. The actual court case may only require a week or two, although some trials may last longer. You may have to testify again at the trial, answering questions similar to what you did in the deposition.
Should we receive an unfavorable judgment in the trial, it is possible that we can appeal the court’s decision, which will lengthen the timeline by several months or longer.
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You Can Afford to Hire the Team at Jenner Law
At Jenner Law, we serve our clients of therapy abuse by operating on a contingency fee basis. This means we do not charge any money ahead of time. Instead, we collect our fee as a percentage of the final settlement amount. If we do not win an award, you do not owe us any money.