Attorneys as Gatekeepers to the Court: The Potential Liability of Attorneys Bringing Suits Based on Recovered Memories of Childhood Sexual Abuse
64 Pages Posted: 9 Aug 2012
Date Written: January 1, 1998
This Article examines the appropriate role of attorneys as gate keepers to the courts in suits involving recovered memories of child hood sexual abuse. Lawsuits brought by adults claiming that they had been sexually abused during childhood, but had forgotten the abuse until it emerged sometime later, are a relatively recent phenomenon. They surfaced only after the "discovery" of childhood sexual abuse and its construction as a social problem in the 1970s and 1980s and became feasible only when the legal system responded by extending the statutes of limitations applicable to such cases. Although many highly publicized cases have involved multiple victims who are young boys (in cases of sexual abuse by clergy, for example), others present the archetypal incest situation, shrouded in silence and involving a single, intrafamily victim.
Keywords: Recovered memories, Child sexual abuse
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation