Reimbursement for counseling services for crime victim?

by Becky

As a child, I was a victim of child molestation. I went to counseling for many years, but stopped receiving services when I lost my medical assistance at age 21, while attending college. Things were fine for many years, until I was once again victimized when I was robbed while working at a gas station/convenience store.

At no time was I offered any type of counseling, even though it affected me greatly. I could no longer work by myself and I was nervous if I was ever left in the store alone with a male customer. My boss decided after a few weeks that she no longer wanted to pay two people to work my shift, so she started working me alone again and I quit after the first shift.

I know in my heart I could never return to that type of job, because the fear is just too much. After having my own children a few years ago, I finally started to realize how much trauma I actually did endure from these two incidents.

Neither of my children has ever been in daycare or babysat by someone other than my sister and mother-in-law. It was not until they started school that they were left with strangers and the thought of what could happen to them away from my watchful eye has put me into panic attacks on several occasions.

I am a control freak and when things are beyond my control, I can become an emotional mess, whether it is uncontrollable crying or more often than not, anger. The anger is never to the point of physical abuse, but I do yell and I can say mean things (typically to my husband).

I also get physical symptoms with the anger, including headaches, chest tightness, and feeling hot all over. I find it extremely negligent that I (and my family) are left to endure the long-lasting effects of my victimizations, while the two men get to go on with their lives.

We have medical insurance through my husband's job, but the co-payment for counseling services is too high and the financial burden it would cause our family would only make things worse.

Do I have any options for receiving services for ongoing trauma based on these incidents, even though it has been years later? Is there any way I can get counseling for these incidents? Thank you for any information you can provide.

Visitor Question:
Disclaimer: Information provided in our response is NOT formal legal advice. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Under no circumstances should the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site be relied upon when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Our response does NOT create an attorney-client relationship. Always get a formal case review from a licensed attorney in your area.

ANSWER for "Reimbursement for counseling services for crime victim?":

Becky (CA):

The current California statute of limitations for filing a civil lawsuit for molestation against a minor is eight years, which can be extended to eight years past the age of majority, or 26 years old, based on delayed discovery. There is currently a statute of limitations of 10 years on filing criminal charges for child molestation, but it can also be extended to 1 year after the victim alerts the police.

The laws change often, so speak with an attorney familiar with these types of cases before deciding to pursue a civil or criminal case.

The state of California offers many services for child molestation victims. Most are at no cost to the victim. To find out more about the services offered go to California’s Victim Resources site.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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