In November 2016, former Bury and Sheffield United footballer Andy Woodward bravely came forward to say he was sexually abused between the ages of 11 and 15 by former football coach and convicted paedophile, Barry Bennell.
Since then, dozens more former child footballers have come forward to speak of the abuse they suffered at the hands of youth coaches with many beginning claims for compensation against the football clubs who failed in their duty of care.
Compensation Claims for Child Abuse in Football
Football clubs are supposed to have a duty of care for the children who play for them and the law states that a club must provide a safe environment at all times. Any breaches in this can lead to a compensation claim being made against them, as is becoming the case following current events. These abuse claims can come in the form of physical abuse claims, sexual abuse claims, or emotional abuse claims.
Even if the abuse happened many years ago, a claim for historic child abuse in football can still be made. The effects of abuse during childhood never truly go away but pursuing a claim can often bring a sense of closure for victims.
Speaking Out About Abuse in Football
The bravery of prominent figures making their experiences public has given courage to other victims; a helpline set up by the NSPCC received more than fifty calls in its first hour alone. Despite this, it can still be difficult for victims to feel ready to speak to someone, especially if their abusers have threatened them as children.
Here at Farleys Solicitors, we have a number of highly experienced, specialist abuse solicitors who have over 20 years’ experience successfully dealing with child abuse claims.