Michael Mertz, attorney at Hurley McKenna & Mertz, P.C., knows from his extensive work representing victims of childhood sexual abuse that victims may take decades to come to terms with, or even identify, their abuse and the damage it has caused. This is why victims of scouting abuse continue to seek compensation for the wrongs they suffered years ago. The rash of new sexual abuse claims filed in January 2020 is what brought on the Boy Scouts of America’s (BSA) February 18, 2020, petition for bankruptcy.
“This is an effort by the national organization to avoid paying full and fair compensation to victims of abuse,” declared Mertz. “We have successfully litigated many cases against BSA and, in the process, illuminated a culture within the organization that allowed pedophiles to prey on young boys. For decades, BSA failed to implement policies that would have ended, or at least curbed, much of this horrific abuse.”
“We understand victims’ suffering. We’ve worked with abused former scouts and achieved legal victories on their behalf,” stated Mertz. “Those who’ve been hurt by the Boy Scouts should consider acting now while they still can.” Mertz and his team at Hurley McKenna & Mertz have been involved in over 300 legal actions involving scouting abuse.
Are you or a loved one a victim of scouting abuse? We can help—contact us today. The sooner victims speak out, the better.
Our firm successfully resolved a case involving 16 boy scouts that accused the Boy Scouts of America and the Chicago Area Council of failing to protect them from a serial pedophile. The suit alleged that the Boy Scouts were aware of former Scoutmaster Thomas Hacker’s previous arrest in Indiana for sexual assault and battery of boys. Hacker died in June 2018 while serving a 100-year prison sentence in Illinois. The suit alleged that The Boy Scouts were aware of Hacker’s criminal record and the previous allegations against him as early as February of 1970. Hurley McKenna & Mertz argued that, because of the Boy Scouts of America’s inadequate screening system, Hacker was able to re-surface as a Scoutmaster in Illinois where he continued to molest boys—some as young as ten years old—for nearly a decade.
Scouting victims’ window of opportunity will close soon.
A January 2020 legal challenge in the nation’s capital seeks to allow former Boy Scouts to file sex abuse claims even if the statute of limitations has expired in their states. Recent laws enacted in California, Hawaii, Montana, New Jersey, and New York have extended the statute of limitations for those filing abuse charges. Previously, abuse victims typically had only two years from the time they turned 18-years-old to file legal claims against the BSA. However, an increased recognition and understanding of the emotional and behavioral effects of abuse has helped change these laws. Now, in cases involving sexual abuse, victims often have two years from the date that they discover that the Boy Scouts were complicit in failing to prevent the sexual abuse, not just from when they discover their injuries from the abuse itself.
The window of opportunity for these victims to take legal action will close soon in the bankruptcy proceedings. The bankruptcy court will set firm deadlines in which victims must file claims or be barred forever. The sooner a victim comes forward, the better.
How can I seek justice if I’m a victim of scouting abuse?
The experts at Hurley McKenna & Mertz are here to simplify the process of filing a claim against the Boy Scouts of America. At Hurley McKenna & Mertz, we represent hundreds of individuals who were victims of abuse while in Boy Scouts. We do not charge a fee unless we obtain compensation for you. We understand that taking action requires you to relive painful memories from your past, but the sooner you can come forward, the better. In our experience as advocates for victims of abuse, only by pursuing a claim, will you obtain the justice and closure you deserve.
Contact us today. Your consultation with us is absolutely free.