Find your Lawyer

Covid-19 update: Business as usual at Bolt Burdon Kemp

Bolt Burdon Kemp continues to remain very much open for business. We are passionate about achieving life-changing results for our clients, providing excellent client care and ensuring you receive the support you need.

We continue to progress our clients’ existing cases and support new clients with their cases.

All of our wonderful people are successfully working from home. We have re-opened our office so that those who need to work in the office are able to do so, in a socially distanced and safe manner. 

Our strategy of working in teams continues to ensure there is always someone for you to talk to. We are using telephone and video-conferencing very effectively. A number of multi-million pound cases have settled since the virus outbreak, using these facilities.

We are determined more than ever that the wheels of justice will keep on turning.

Contact us on 020 7288 4800 or and one of our team will get in touch with you.

Read more from Managing Partner, Jonathan Wheeler

Round the clock support
Won't shy away from difficult cases
Committed to swiftly progressing claims
Military Claims

Military Sexual Assault Claims

Our specialist military claims team has represented many service men and women who have suffered a sexual assault and we’ve seen the devastating impact it can have. Read on for how we can help you.

Contact us for an informal chat with one of our legal experts, no strings attached
Get in touch

We take great care to discuss the case confidentially and sensitively with our client and help them to find the support they need and the compensation they deserve.

If you have been affected by sexual assault in the military please get in touch with our team for confidential advice. We usually represent clients on a no-win, no-fee basis, so making a claim will not be a financial burden.

Sexual assault in the military

Service personnel assume that the special bond they have with their comrades will mean they are never in danger of any kind of assault, never mind one of a sexual nature.

It is this very camaraderie and esprit de corps that makes such assaults feel, if anything, like more of a betrayal, made even worse if the chain of command has not taken steps to protect the victim.

Sexual assault can often be the culmination of a campaign of sexual harassment or bullying and the victims of such operations are in an especially vulnerable position. Our team knows this, and has great experience in sensitively helping victims get redress for their experiences.

Losses and injuries

Victims of sexual assault are dealing with both physical and psychological issues. Particularly after a prolonged period of abuse, service men and women may be suffering from PTSD or other mental health problems. Our team ensures all consequences of the assault are considered when compensation is sought.

For example, very real financial loss can result because a person may be too unwell to continue in the military. Alternatively, they may simply feel they can no longer work in the armed forces even if they are physically or psychologically fit to do so. Either way, a claim can be made against the MoD.

Liability for a claim

After a sexual assault, the military may have vicarious liability (legal responsibility) for the perpetrator’s actions, so that a victim of sexual assault can sue both the MoD as well as the person responsible.

This dual approach is more likely to be possible if certain factors are present. Examples would be if:

  • The perpetrator was of a higher rank
  • Had been acting in a way that should have been noticed and prevented
  • Had been harassing the victim

A claim can always be made against the perpetrator, although it is not always practicable to pursue it If, for example if they are bankrupt if would be hard to enforce a claim.

Criminal proceedings

Obviously, a sexual assault is a crime. However, the military has discretion as to whether to deal with cases of sexual assault, exposure or voyeurism via the Military Police or to refer them to the civilian police for investigation.

Rape, surprisingly, is not included in the definition of “very serious crimes” which must be automatically referred to civilian authorities for investigation.

A civil compensation claim is easier if the perpetrator has been convicted in a criminal court, but the fact that the military or civilian police have not pursued a case does not automatically mean that a civil claim will be unsuccessful.

Information about military sexual assault

Unfortunately there is no systematic information gathering about the number of allegations of sexual assault in the UK military. This needs to remedied, especially as the US and Australian military are getting increasing reports of sexual assault.

At the moment, we do not know if the UK military’s experience is the same. Liberty, the human rights group, is campaigning for a fair and independent military justice system, which will help remedy some of these problems.

If you have been a victim of sexual assault in the military, then please contact our highly experienced team of military claims experts for confidential advice about bringing a claim for compensation.

Meet our Military Claims Team

Siobhan Rochford
Paralegal – Part of the Military Claims Team
Victoria Sedgwick
Solicitor – Part of the Military Claims Team
Tom Spearpoint
Senior Solicitor – Part of the Military Claims Team
Meet the full team

Our Insights

Attending an Inquest – what to expect

My colleagues have recently written blogs about when an inquest will be held and what happens at the pre-inquest review hearing. This blog explores what…

By Victoria Sedgwick
Legal Advice Clinic

Sarah Atherton MP recently spoke in the House of Commons highlighting the injustices faced by women in the military.  She said they do not feel…

By Tom Spearpoint
Military accidents: when things go seriously wrong

I hear examples of avoidable accidents from my clients on a regular basis. In this blog I look at what happens when things go seriously…

By Kate Roos
Fundraising During Lockdown: Blesma Virtual 11K for Rememberance Sunday

On Sunday 8th November 2020, 180 participants took part in the first Blesma Remembrance Sunday 11k event.  With many people undertaking the Couch to 5k…

By Bolt Burdon Kemp
Read all posts

Some of Our Accreditations

See more of our accreditations

We’re here to help you.

Want to talk to one of our experienced lawyers? We can call when it suits you for a no-obligation, strictly confidential chat.

Your browser is out of date. Please update your browser.

This site (and many others) provides a limited experience on unsupported browsers and not all functionality will work correctly or look its best.