Many victims of abuse by Boy Scout leaders are confused about what to do, especially in view of the Boy Scouts of America filing for bankruptcy with a bankruptcy claim deadline fast approaching on November 16, 2020. While sometimes dates may change or be extended, especially because of the Corona virus pandemic and the vast reach of the Boy Scouts, if you were a victim you should file your claim now to avoid any time issues. If after reading this article you have any further questions or need legal guidance, please call us at 1 866 INJURY 2 or 818.222.3400 or simply use our contact link. Remember, with our injury law firm there is NO charge for the consultation-it is absolutely FREE!
Over the years we are approached often by victims of serious accidents, usually it’s a family member of someone killed in an accident with a wrongful death accident claim, but too often its AFTER the time deadline often called the statute of limitations.
In California for most injury accidents the time deadline is two (2) years from the date of incident [which is double the time and certainly is better than the one (1) year time deadline when our law firm started our personal injury and wrongful death practice in the 1970s, causing some injured claimants to be left without a remedy if they did not settle or file suit within this short one (1) year time period and it also caused more litigation since too often only a one year time period is just not sufficient time to resolve for the best amount a serious injury or wrongful death accident claim]. In California there are other time deadlines, including if a government entity is involved a claim must be filed within six (6) months, if it is a medical malpractice claim then suit within three (3) years of the date of the malpractice but not more than one (1) year from the date the claim was or should have been discovered. There are many time rules and exceptions so if you were injured its best to consult with an injury lawyer right away! The above is provided only as a general guideline, each case is different and you are advised to consult with a qualified injury lawyer as soon as possible after any injury accident.
Regarding the Boy Scout cases, the bankruptcy court has set-up a Torts Claimants Committee (referred to as the “TCC”) which is responsible for representing the interests of all abuse claimants in the bankruptcy proceedings.
Keep in mind that this bankruptcy only covers the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), the organization which actually filed for bankruptcy court protection. It does not necessarily cover or resolve all abuse claims.
There may be at least three (3) separate claims for some abuse survivors:
- A claim against the BSA
- A claim against any local council of the BSA that oversaw the specific boy scout troop and or camp
- A claim against any organization that sponsored the scout troop
Some think the strongest or best claims may be against the local scout council or any sponsoring organization who knew or should have known of any abuse, such as if they received any complaints about any scoutmaster or other scout leader and ignored them. One reason for this is because the BSA is in bankruptcy and its insurance may not be sufficient.
While it is possible many or all such claims could be combined in the bankruptcy court, presently they are not so filing a claim against the BSA in bankruptcy court alone will not presently appropriately protect the abuse survivors.
Meanwhile, the bankruptcy court has ordered the BSA not to transfer any assets and it ordered an injunction against claims against the BSA, the local scout councils and any scout troop sponsoring organizations to, among other things, preserve the limited assets so they may be apportioned more fairly among all claimants.
If you were the victim of abuse by the BSA or anyone else, let us know. We can discuss whether you have a claim. There is NO charge to do this and there is NO obligation.