Vicarious liability has been brought to the spotlight once again after The Lawn Tennis Association apologised for the actions of one of their coaches who has admitted sexually abusing a child.

Daniel Sanders, a former professional player who went on to coach in Wrexham before moving to Somerset, was jailed for six years in July for eight counts of sexual activity with a child.

The Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) has since admitted that “the actions they had taken to protect children were not enough”.

The LTA have now commenced an independent inquiry into the offences and Wrexham Tennis Centre.

A spokesperson said;

“The inquiry will look at what lessons everyone in tennis can learn and we will publish its findings once it is complete.”

I have come across a number of case with similar circumstances to this and it is important to remember that an organisation may be vicariously liable, i.e. legally responsible, for the acts of an abuser whether that is a sports centre, scout group, school or council.

It is possible to bring a claim against the abuser themselves and sometimes this is the only option, provided that they have sufficient assets, such as owning their own property.

Additionally victims may be entitled to make a claim to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) which is a government funded body which compensates victims of violent crimes, including sexual assault. These claims should be made within 2 years of the matter having been reported to the police.

I have found while acting on behalf of victims of sexual abuse, that making a claim through the civil courts often helps our clients to feel that justice has been done and enables them to obtain the treatment they may need to make a real difference to their lives.

If you, or someone you know, has been the victim of abuse, it can be hard to speak about this. However, the team at Farleys is extremely experienced and will speak to you in the strictest confidence.

If you do not feel able to talk about what happened, I can be contacted by email.