The Boy Scouts of America are in Bankruptcy Court trying to minimize the negative financial impact resulting from their widespread cover up of decades of sexual abuse within their ranks. The Tort Claimants Committee and the Boy Scouts of America have now agreed to a firm deadline of November 16, 2020 for victims to file a formal “Proof of Claims” form if they wish to seek compensation from the Boy Scouts. The Bankruptcy Court is expected to enter an Order approving the deadline this week. Also expected this week is the release of the official Sexual Abuse Survivor Proof of Claim form.
Hurley McKenna & Mertz represents more than 1,400 former Boy Scouts who are victims of sexual abuse, and HMM is shepherding these scouting abuse victims through the painful and complex process of seeking justice and compensation for their injuries.
Hurley McKenna & Mertz partner Evan Smola has stated: “The November 16, 2020 deadline to file abuse claims is the byproduct of hard-fought negotiations between the Tort Claimants Committee—the official committee of abuse victims—and the Boy Scouts. We believe it is a tough deadline that will be difficult for many to meet. Victims of sexual abuse often take years to process their abuse and come forward: this deadline gives them until just before Thanksgiving. It is important that victims come forward as soon as possible.”
Do not go through the claims process alone.
Hurley McKenna & Mertz has been representing abuse victims for decades and secured the largest single perpetrator settlement in the history of the Boy Scouts. The firm’s intimate understanding of the abuse within youth service organizations is extensive.
HMM is working with teams of experienced social workers, who understand the “ins and outs” of the difficult task of proving sexual abuse. A single mistake on one of these forms could result in the court barring a claim or significantly reducing a victim’s compensation. HMM will carefully go through the claim forms with each claimant, independently gathering as much information as we can about each victim’s troop, sponsoring organization, and abuser. Our team of experienced attorneys and knowledgeable counselors, working together, is the best way to ensure that each claim form is accurate, and that essential information is verified, while keeping in mind the painful memories of the victims.
Scouting victims’ window of opportunity will close soon.
The Bankruptcy Court is expected to set a firm deadline of November 16, 2020, after which time, abused individuals will not be able to pursue a claim for the wrongs they’ve suffered. It is important for someone who was abused to seek counsel now, in order to help navigate the process and ensure the best possibility for financial restitution.
While claims are being filed, Hurley McKenna & Mertz will continue to fight the Boy Scouts of America in Bankruptcy Court to maximize the amount of assets available to victims. Funds to compensate Boy Scout abuse victims should come from the national organization’s assets, local council assets, and insurance policies.
“We have anticipated this bankruptcy process and are doing all we can to mitigate the pain that it may cause victims,” HMM’s Evan Smola stated. “Hurley McKenna & Mertz’s extensive experience in representing sexual abuse victims when youth service organizations like the Boy Scouts declare bankruptcy allows us to work with each victim to take best advantage of the ways in which courts, mediators, and trustees evaluate sexual abuse claims.. Ultimately, this will maximize recovery for individuals who have been hurt by this organization, the once trusted Boy Scouts of America, and will ensure that the Scouts be held to account for the pain it caused abuse victims.”
Read more about Hurley McKenna & Mertz, P.C.’s work representing victims of scouting abuse here.
Did You File a Claim Against the Boy Scouts of America?
The Bankruptcy Court deadline has closed. The experts at Hurley McKenna & Mertz represent more than 1,400 former Boy Scouts who are victims of sexual abuse. We’re tracking all of the news related to the Boy Scouts bankruptcy filing and what it means for claimants.
You can see all the latest updates here.