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High School Sports Hazing Lawsuit

Hazing in high school sports has been shrouded in a code of silence for generations, and it causes deep emotional scars that can last a lifetime. A high school sports hazing lawsuit provides an opportunity to pursue financial compensation for the pain, suffering, and humiliation your child has been forced to endure.

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Participating in sports is supposed to be a rewarding experience, but for many high school athletes, it becomes a nightmare that feels inescapable. Reporting the abuse is heavily discouraged, and teens who do courageously come forward often face retaliation while school administrators turn a blind eye to the abuse.

When you hire one of our compassionate and experienced high school sports hazing lawyers at Levin & Perconti, we will advocate for your child, taking on the school that failed to protect your child and those who participated in or enabled the hazing.

High school football team

What Is High School Sports Hazing?

Hazing is an abusive activity typically used as an initiation ritual for admittance to a group. Usually, a prospective member must submit to dangerous, humiliating, or otherwise harmful activities with or without consent. It may involve the following:

  • Sexual assault
  • Forced servitude
  • Public humiliation
  • Physical assault
  • Severe emotional abuse
  • Forced drug or alcohol abuse
  • Forced sleep deprivation
  • Exposure to extreme temperatures
  • Dangerous stunts

Sports teams often use hazing as a bonding exercise. Hazing is a system of control that allows individuals at the top of the hierarchy to torment others for their own entertainment. New athletes typically experience the most severe hazing, with a gradual decrease in the severity and frequency of hazing as they comply with their abusers and adapt to the hazing culture.

What Are The Effects Of Hazing Incidents On High School Athletes?

Hazing creates a hostile environment where students feel unsafe and trapped. Despite living in a time when sexual abuse victims are increasingly encouraged to speak out, hazing victims are conditioned to view hazing as normal. It can have a profound effect on your teen’s mental health, which may result in the following:

  • Sleep problems
  • Decline in academic performance
  • Loss of ability to trust others
  • Low self-esteem
  • Loss of sense of control
  • Loss of interest in athletics
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Physical illness
  • Hospitalization

Hazing victims may be forced to haze other students to escape worse punishments for themselves. This reinforces the code of silence and may further damage your child’s self-esteem. If your child was forced to haze others, this does not change their right to seek justice and recover compensation.

High school football locker room

Is the School Responsible for Hazing?

Schools are legally obligated to protect children from harm during school-sponsored activities, including sports. One hazing incident is too many, yet it often continues for years—even decades. Negligence by a school may include the following:

  • Failure to monitor the sports programs
  • Failure by coaches to discourage, stop, and prevent hazing
  • Participation in hazing by coaches or other school staff
  • Failure of school administrations to investigate reports of hazing
  • Negligent hiring practices
  • Failure to penalize or fire coaches who enable or participate in hazing

What Are My Options if High School Sports Hazing Injured My Child?

Your child should have a comprehensive medical examination and a psychological evaluation to assess the degree of harm that has been done. If your child has experienced physical or sexual abuse, you should contact law enforcement to initiate a criminal investigation.

Your child’s school will have a procedure for filing a formal complaint. However, we have found that this is often ineffective in hazing cases. The most effective method to stop the abuse and give your child a voice is to contact a skilled high school sports hazing lawyer.

How A High School Sexual Assault Attorney Can Help

Hiring the right sexual assault lawyer can help restore your child’s sense of power and give them a voice against toxic hazing culture. When you contact our caring and dedicated high school hazing lawyers, we will do the following:

  • Report the abuse to the appropriate authorities on your behalf
  • Protect your child from retaliation
  • Advocate for you and your child
  • Fight for the compensation your child deserves

Compensation for High School Sports Hazing

Damages in a high school sports hazing case may include compensation for the following:

  • Medical expenses for your child’s physical injuries
  • Mental health counseling expenses
  • Pain and suffering
  • Humiliation
  • Inconvenience
  • Loss of academic opportunities
  • Punitive damages

Punitive damages may be available if school officials engaged in deliberate misconduct or displayed gross negligence. In high school sports hazing cases, this may include the following:

  • A coach knowingly ignored hazing or participated in it.
  • School administrators refused to investigate hazing reports.
  • School officials were aware of hazing but failed to stop it.

Why Hire Levin & Perconti

Since our establishment in 1992, we have become one of the nation’s most respected human rights law firms. Our talented attorneys have over 400 years of combined experience helping clients recover substantial compensation for injuries caused by abuse and negligence.  

We have represented thousands of survivors of physical and sexual abuse by clergy, school employees, and nursing home staff. We understand the toll hazing can take on you and your teen. Our caring high school sports hazing attorneys refuse to settle for less than you deserve, and we are unafraid to take a case to trial.

If your child has been hazed in high school sports, you don’t have to stand against the school alone. There are no upfront costs to hire us, and you only pay if we win. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.