Bankruptcy judge, Laurie Silverstein, presiding over the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) bankruptcy proceeding, on 9-8-2022, approved the $2.46 billion reorganization plan proposed by the Boy Scouts of America, which would help compensate thousands of individuals who claimed being sexually abused in scouting.
Oaks Law Firm, Lead Counsel and Founder, Matthew Nezhad, stated: “We are elated for our many clients and happy they can close this chapter of their lives.” Most of the $2.46 billion is to be paid to the victims and survivors and some funds would be set aside in a trust to continue litigation against entities that have not settled, mainly insurance companies that generally try to contest having to compensate for their insureds wrongful acts.
Nezhad mentioned, “These types of cases take a long time due to the sheer amount of survivors/clients and the work that needs to bring it to completion.” The payout will likely take a while before all receive their financial compensation.
Many of our clients are happy the case is moving towards completion but some others feel like no amount will give them the life they could have had if this real life horror story had not taken place.
The reorganization plan, will make the BSA, its local councils, settling insurance companies, groups like parishes and sponsoring churches, to contribute to a fund for our clients, in exchange for no more lawsuits from those releasing survivors. The preliminary figures signal that some of the more severe abuses, the survivors sustained could receive seven figure compensation, depending on a variety of factors.
The BSA reported that they are “…grateful to the survivor community, whose bravery, patience, and willingness to share their experiences has been instrumental in the formation of this Plan,”.
A federal district judge must still sign off on the Bankruptcy judge’s ruling.
The BSA is a nationally known, with one of the largest youth organizations, in the nation with millions of members. In 1979 there were over 5 million children in BSA. Over the years, there have been thousands of sex abuse claims and lawsuits by victims of alleged predators, volunteers and employees working or involved with BSA. Men and boys whose claims of rape, molestation and abuse proved that the Boy Scouts’ pedophile problem was far more widespread than the BSA had ever acknowledged. In 1988, the BSA was pressured to create a sex abuse education and prevention program to address the growing sex abuse problem within their organization.
The BSA eventually had no choice but to file for bankruptcy protection in February of 2020, after mounting legal costs from sex abuse lawsuits, as well as the sharp decline from memberships.