One small step for the Church but a giant step for humanity

Whether you are a victim of sexual abuse in England or in ustralia the biggest hurdle that you have to overcome in the fight for justice is the law on limitation. In simple terms in England and the ustralian states there are laws which prohibit the bringing of so-called stale claims. When the parliamentarians were making these laws they probably never thought about victims of abuse, let alone the fact that by the very nature of the injuries suffered would never think about making a claim until many years later. onsequently victims’ lawyers have to work very hard to get round these difficult  and seemingly unjust laws. In my experience defendants invariable raise limitation as a defence regardless of the merits, and so it seems a great shaft of light is with us now that  the nglican hurch in Brisbane has resolved to negotiate a protocol for waiving the time limit blocking child sex abuse victims from suing. motion calling for the church to stop invoking the statute, which is 21 years in Queensland, was debated at the Brisbane diocese annual Synod reported he ge, but did not pass. However, an amended motion was passed as follows: "(Synod resolved to) sk the archbishop and council to continue its ethical lead by undertaking negotiations with the diocesan insurers to establish a protocol for dealing with claims by victims of child sex abuse when the diocese considers it appropriate not to invoke the time limitation defence without losing indemnity from our insurers," the motion read.

The spokesman told he ge that the synod, a parliament of 400 clergy and lay people, backed continuing discussion of the issue. "We'll be writing to our insurers and saying we want to meet with you to formulate an agreement that allows us to instruct you to waive the provision of the stature where it's appropriate," he said. he synod also supported continued lobbying by nglican leader rchbishop Phillip spinall for a uniform national statute of at least 37 years, the current level in NSW, Victoria and asmania. "We've written to all national heads of churches to ask them to join us in appealing for unity," the church spokesman said. "We want victims of sexual abuse to be treated fairly and we don't think the current statute of limitations does that. "We want to make sure that if people want to sue us through the court system the statute of limitations is not going to be an impediment ... but there are cases where the statute of limitations is actually quite valid." Whilst the last sentence is unwelcome, because I struggle to see why the “statute of limitations” could ever be valid in a sexual abuse case, the approach being adopted is more than welcome. One small step for the hurch but a giant step for humanity. If you have been sexual abused and want confidential legal advice please contact me. Alan Collins Or you can contact my colleague Charles Derham


Lisa has more than 20 years’ experience of dealing with Personal Injury matters ranging from road traffic accidents to workplace injury and liability. She offers a sympathetic and professional approach to her clients’ problems and advises on funding options (including insurance and Conditional Fee Agreements.)

Her extensive knowledge of the Civil Procedure Rules, skills in evidence gathering and analysis of liability and causation, and experience in risk assessment and settlement negotiation make her a valuable asset to clients and colleagues alike.

She is also a member of Verisona Law’s Historic Abuse Team and undertakes documentary analysis, work relating to case evidence and the development of legal arguments to secure successful settlements. She is fluent in German and Persian.

Lisa also has experience in Civil Litigation regarding Debt Recovery, Breach of Contract, and Insolvency Law.

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Lisa studied ‘Contract Law, European Law and Employment Law’ as part of her degree in BA (Hons) Business Administration. She has also studied other business subjects, including accounting.

Having completed her degree, Lisa started work for Verisona Law in November 1999 in the Personal Injury department as a Trainee Litigation Clerk and since then has developed extensive skills in relation to personal injury litigation and case preparation.

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