Experienced OBGYN Sexual Assault Lawyer: Seeking Justice for Victims

Our OBGYN Sexual Assault Lawsuit page is where you'll find comprehensive information and resources for women seeking guidance on what to do after they are victims of an OBGYN sexual assault.

Our goal is to create a valuable resource for victims, offer insights into understanding OBGYN sexual assault, explore your legal rights and options, and offer support throughout the legal process. We know this is a complex and challenging time, so we want to provide you with as much information as possible with a focus on sincerity and compassion.

In this article, you will learn about the types of OBGYN sexual assault, the importance of pursuing actions against the perpetrator and the different ways you can do that, helpful resources, and FAQs to 

Hopefully, this information can help you navigate what can be a complex and daunting process, especially since most people have never been assaulted before and usually have never needed to file a civil or criminal case 

If you or someone you know has been affected by OBGYN sexual assault, please know that support and assistance are available.

It’s important to remember that any type of sexual contact or behavior that makes you feel uncomfortable by your OBGYN is inappropriate. If you believe that you have been sexually abused by your OB-GYN, you should report the abuse to the police and seek medical attention. You should also report them to the medical board and speak to a lawyer to understand your rights and options. You can also find support groups and other resources online or by contacting a local rape crisis center so that you can get help and support in your recovery.

Experienced OBGYN Sexual Assault Lawyer Table Of Contents

Understanding OB-GYN Sexual Assault

OB-GYNs (an acronym used to describe both obstetricians and gynecologists) are medical professionals who specialize in women's health, particularly reproductive health. Unfortunately, there have been instances where OB-GYNs have abused their position of trust and committed sexual abuse or misconduct against their patients. 

OBGYN sexual assault refers to any form of sexual misconduct, abuse, or assault perpetrated by an obstetrician, gynecologist, or other healthcare professional within the field.

This can include:

  • Unwanted touching
  • Inappropriate comments
  • Sexual coercion
  • Sexual aggression
  • Non-consensual procedures
  • Any other violation of a patient's bodily autonomy

Not only are these actions criminal and no different than if a stranger did them to you, but they also breach the trust and ethical obligations that patients expect from their healthcare providers. 

This, in itself, can lead to profound physical, emotional, and psychological harm besides the injuries and trauma that the sexual assault itself causes. Women may no longer feel safe going to their OBGYN for important checkup procedures, getting regular mammograms, or doing any number of medical procedures where they would need to trust their healthcare provider.

OBGYNs often have the full trust of their patients, and to violate that trust in such a horrible way is a breach of the Hippocratic Oath, the law, and humanity itself.

Noticing Signs of Sexual Abuse in Your Teen by their OBGYN

If you have a daughter who is seeing an OBGYN and may be alone with them, you should know the signs of sexual abuse by an OBGYN to protect your child. These signs may include:

Sexual Comments or Inappropriate Jokes: If your daughter’s OBGYN makes sexual comments, jokes, or engages in inappropriate conversation when you are around, it's a big red flag.

Unneeded Procedures: If your child’s OBGYN recommends procedures or treatments that your child is uncomfortable with or that seem unnecessary, that could be cause for concern.

Emotional or Psychological Distress: Victims of sexual abuse by an OBGYN will likely show signs of emotional or psychological distress, including anxiety, depression, fear, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). These symptoms may manifest both during and after encounters with the perpetrator.

Changes in Behavior: Your teen may exhibit changes in their behavior after seeing their OBGYN. This can include withdrawal, avoidance of medical care, or changes in mood or personality.

Physical Injuries: Of course, if you notice or are told about any physical injuries, you should have another doctor examine them right away and start a conversation about what may have happened.

It's important to make sure that young women are safe when they see doctors, including OBGYNs since they are an extremely vulnerable group. Trust your instincts and ask questions if you suspect any type of sexual abuse or misconduct by an OBGYN.

Holding perpetrators of OBGYN sexual assault responsible is crucial for several reasons, including getting justice, helping yourself to heal, holding them accountable for their actions, and preventing them from hurting other people. As we will soon see, some medical professionals get away with it for a very long time and can hurt hundreds of victims.

If you are facing this situation, you have the legal right to pursue accountability through criminal charges, civil litigation, and professional disciplinary action. 

Criminal Charges

Filing criminal charges against OBGYN sexual assault perpetrators is crucial and can serve multiple important purposes. 

First, it deters other doctors and OBGYNs from harming others by setting a legal precedent and showing the consequences of their actions. It also protects society from dangerous predators. Criminal trials can also empower victims when they get the chance to confront their abusers in court and have their experiences validated. This can be a powerful step towards healing. 

Finally, convictions validate the victims' stories, giving them a sense of closure and the knowledge that their abuser is now suffering.

Civil Litigation

Civil lawsuits (more commonly thought of as personal injury lawsuits) hold the perpetrator accountable for their actions and provide a sense of justice for the victim in a different way than criminal charges, but they can be just as important. When you hold your perpetrator accountable through the civil court system, you often hit them in the only place these people care about: their wallets.

Civil cases can also help victims get the much-needed compensation they are entitled to for medical expenses, therapy costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering incurred as a result of the assault.

Civil action can also help prevent similar situations from happening to other women by raising awareness in the media and, if applicable, by holding healthcare organizations or other institutions accountable for inadequate oversight.

Professional Disciplinary Action

Finally, healthcare professionals—including obstetricians and gynecologists (OBGYNs)—are held to high professional and ethical standards by different medical boards and similar regulatory bodies. 

When allegations of misconduct like sexual assault are brought against an OBGYN, these organizations have the authority to investigate the situation and take disciplinary action if the perpetrator is found guilty of misconduct.

These disciplinary actions for OBGYN sexual assault perpetrators include:

  • Placing them on probation
  • Imposing fines and other financial penalties
  • Requiring them to undergo education and training programs focused on ethics
  • Issuing a public reprimand or censure against the OBGYN
  • Revoke the OBGYN's privileges to practice at certain hospitals and healthcare facilities
  • Suspending or completely revoking the OBGYN's medical license
  • And, of course, reporting them to law enforcement.

Overall, disciplinary action by the medical boards and similar organizations that oversee the perpetrator plays a crucial role in holding OBGYNs accountable for misconduct, protecting patients from harm, and upholding the integrity of the medical profession.

OB-GYNs Who Are Currently Facing Consequences and Other Recent Developments

OB/GYNs and hospitals currently facing civil and criminal proceedings over sexual abuse allegations. 

Dr. Fabio Ortega and ​​NorthShore, Endeavor Health, and Swedish Hospital

Currently, there is a massive scandal going on in Chicago where Dr. Fabio Ortega, once a prominent OB/GYN at NorthShore University Health System in Chicago, is being accused and is facing lawsuits for allegedly sexually assaulting over 300 women. 

In 2021, Dr. Fabio was found guilty of criminal sexual abuse of two former patients. However, it seems Dr. Ortega has continued sexually assaulting and abusing female patients for years. 

Because of these hundreds of assaults, attorneys have begun filing personal injury lawsuits against Dr. Ortega and the hospital that continued to employ him, NorthShore Health System (now called Endeavor Health).

Dr. Fabio Ortega was once a prominent and respected OB-GYN in Chicago. Working for decades, he likely saw thousands of patients and delivered thousands of babies. But in 2018, Ortega was charged with criminal sexual assault on one of his patients, and his medical license was suspended. But he continued to work. 

In October 2021, he once again pleaded guilty to criminal sexual assault charges involving two different female patients. 

These victims both claim that Ortega sexually assaulted them during a routine pelvic exam. Dr. Ortega—if that title is even appropriate—only served one year in jail for his crimes. 

However, now that these stories made headlines, many other women are finding the strength to come forward and tell their stories. This has started a wave of sexual abuse lawsuits against Dr. Ortega, NorthShore Health System (now Endeavor Health), and Swedish Hospital (another former employer of Dr. Ortega).

The lawsuits allege that Dr. Ortega asked female patients inappropriate questions about their sexual fantasies and intimate details about their sex lives. He is also accused of performing unnecessary breast, genital, and rectal examinations, inserting his fingers into patients’ vaginas with no medical purpose, and other physical touch, including stimulation. We will leave it at that for the sake of the victims and because you get the picture. 

NorthShore Hospital is being sued for vicarious liability and direct negligence for allowing Dr. Ortega to continue work and treat patients even after he was criminally charged with sexually assaulting patients.

Vicarious liability attempts to hold employers accountable for their employee’s actions, but it can be difficult to prove. However, in this case, a jury may have no trouble seeing the hospital played a role in these crimes. Likewise, they are being sued for direct negligence for continuing to employ Ortega, letting him see patients, and ignoring obvious red flags like ordering an unusually high number of pelvic exams and, hmmm, his ongoing police investigation! 

The number of people that Ortega has violated is unknown, but it’s likely in the hundreds or higher. His misconduct spans 30+ years. But we will see how things play out as he faces all the coming sexual assault lawsuits.

Can I File A Lawsuit Against My OBGYN?

Any survivor of sexual abuse or assault has the right to file a sexual assault personal injury lawsuit against their attacker and any other parties involved, like the hospital. You have this right even if you didn’t file criminal charges or report it at the time. 

Some states have a statute of limitations that limits the amount of time you have to file a civil lawsuit against your perpetrators. For example, the statute of limitations for adults who are sexually assaulted in Florida is typically limited to four years from the date of the incident. However, statutes of limitations vary based on the specific circumstances, like when the person found out they were assaulted, if they were a minor, or if they didn’t know their injuries were caused by the assault. 

Some states have taken steps to remove the statute of limitations for filing a sexual assault lawsuit. These changes aim to give victims more time to come forward and seek justice.

What Are the Criteria to File a Sexual Assault Lawsuit Against an OBGYN?

The criteria for filing a personal injury lawsuit against an OBGYN for alleged sexual assault include:

Evidence of Sexual Misconduct: There must be evidence to support the allegations of sexual assault or misconduct by the OBGYN. This evidence may include witness statements, medical records, photographs, or other documentation corroborating the victim's account.

Violation of Professional Standards: The OBGYN must have violated medical standards.

Damages: Victims of sexual assault by an OBGYN must have evidence of damages, such as medical records, therapy reports, or testimony from mental health professionals.

Statute of Limitations: As mentioned before, your state may have a statute of limitations for sexual assault cases that sets a time limit for how long you have to file a lawsuit. 

Legal Representation: It's important for victims of sexual assault to have legal representation from experienced attorneys who specialize in handling sexual assault cases. A skilled lawyer can provide you with guidance and support and the best possible chance of getting compensation for your damages. 

Willingness to Pursue Legal Action: Finally, you must be ready to pursue legal action against the OBGYN who sexually assaulted you. This can be an emotional process and should be seriously considered before moving forward. 

Resources and Support for OBGYN Assault Victims

1. National Sexual Assault Hotline, Operated by the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN). Confidential support, information, and referrals to local resources for individuals affected by sexual assault. Available 24/7 at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

2. Local sexual assault centers or advocacy organizations in your area that offer services for survivors. Usually deal with crisis intervention, counseling, support groups, legal advocacy, and assistance with navigating medical and legal systems. Most are free and are in almost all cities or counties. Search online to find one near you. 

3. Seeking therapy or counseling from qualified mental health professionals can be extremely helpful for OBGYN assault victims to process trauma, manage emotions, and rebuild a sense of safety and empowerment. Look for a counselor who practices trauma-informed care and who has worked with survivors of sexual assault.

4. Joining support groups for survivors of sexual assault can provide OBGYN assault victims with peer support, validation, and a sense of community. These can be in-person or online. Nothing can make you feel less alone like other people who have experienced something similar, who can be there for you, and who can point you toward resources.

Lawsuit Legal News, through our sister firm, Dolman Law Group, can help you hold the OBGYN, other healthcare professionals, and any third parties who assaulted you or contributed to your assault accountable. We have handled thousands of sexual assault cases involving all kinds of organizations, including Uber, Dioceses, Priests, the Catholic church, the Mormon church, teen detention centers, school systems, major websites, school athletic programs, nursing homes, the VA, and many others.

We want to empower you to stand up for your rights and to seek the compensation you deserve for your damages, including medical bills, therapy bills, counseling, lost wages, pain and suffering, and anything else this situation costs you. 

The Sexual Abuse Lawyers at LLN and Dolman Law Group offer compassionate and confidential legal representation while being extremely aggressive in going after the perpetrator and any institutions that helped them, turning a blind eye, failing to notice, or hiring or maintaining dangerous employees. 

We understand the deep impact that OBGYN sexual assault can have on victims and their families. Our firm is dedicated to providing compassionate and effective legal representation to individuals who have experienced sexual misconduct at the hands of obstetricians, gynecologists, or other healthcare professionals.

We are here to support you, advocate for you, and fight for the justice you deserve. Contact us today!

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