Catholic Church


Hundreds of sexual abuse cases filed under new law, but Lower Hudson Valley cases sparse

When the first day of the one-year window to file historic sexual abuse lawsuits ended, a clearer picture of where and who the cases will focus on emerged. One of most prolific abusers identified earlier this year by The Journal News/lohud, Dr. Reginal Archibald, started having lawsuits filed against his employer, the Rockefeller University Hospital. James Marsh of New York-based Marsh Law explained why it’s customary to not include dollar amounts in the initial filings in civil cases in New York. “It’s disfavored as part of New York law to include ...

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NY law gives child sex abuse victims new chance at justice

New York state’s new Child Victims Act is already changing lives. Ali Velshi and Stephanie Ruhle speak with Jennifer Freeman, whose firm represents hundreds of child sex abuse survivors, and Shaun Dougherty, who is a survivor of abuse within the Catholic church, about their thoughts on this new opportunity for justice.

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Lawsuit: Former Albany Bishop Howard Hubbard sexually abused teen

ALBANY — Former Bishop Howard Hubbard is accused of sexually abusing a 16-year-old boy during the 1990s, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday. "From approximately 1994 through 1998, Father Bondi and Bishop Hubbard exploited the trust and authority vested in them by defendants by grooming P.R. to gain his trust and to obtain control over him as part of Father Bondi and Bishop Hubbard's plan to sexually molest and abuse P.R. and other children," the lawsuit filed by the the Marsh Law Firm alleges. Other lawsuits filed by the Marsh Law Firm allege ...

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New York opens door to old abuse claims: “I never thought that this moment would come”

A groundbreaking new law took effect overnight in New York. The Child Victims Act gives sexual abuse survivors, barred by a statute of limitations, a one-year window to file a civil lawsuit against their alleged perpetrators, and institutions like the boy scouts, schools and the Catholic Church. "This is about accountability and responsibility," Freeman said. "Holding those institutions responsible for what they allowed or did to children." The Child Victims Act opens a one-year "look-back window" in New York during which any person who was under the age of ...

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Child Victims Act lawsuits to peel open decades of secrecy in clergy sex abuse

The Child Victims Act's look-back window flips the tables on the Catholic Church’s ability to control information about its handling of victims and clergy accused of abuse. Dioceses across the state are expected to be a primary target of lawsuits, though any institution that works with children and employed a child molester is susceptible. The Child Victims Act doesn’t make it easier for plaintiffs to win cases, though. In cases of clergy abuse, lawyers will sue the diocese for negligence, arguing that bishops and other administrators knew or should have known ...

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Thousands of cases expected as NY opens window for sex abuse suits

ALBANY — New York courts, law firms, Catholic dioceses, Boy Scout troops and schools are bracing for an onslaught of civil lawsuits to be filed by people seeking justice for long-ago sexual abuse when a special one-year “look back” period begins Wednesday. Thousands of cases are expected to be filed on that first day alone. At least two law firms are handling upward of 400 claims each, court officials said. “It is really unprecedented, what is happening in New York,” said Jason Amala, an attorney whose firm anticipates filing more than 100 claims on ...

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He Says a Priest Abused Him. 50 Years Later, He Can Now Sue.

Major institutions across New York State, from the Catholic Church to the Boy Scouts of America to elite private schools, are bracing for a deluge of lawsuits now that adults who said they were sexually abused as children will be entitled to pursue formal legal action. New York joined more than a dozen states this year in significantly extending statutes of limitations for filing lawsuits over sexual abuse. Previously, the state had required that such suits be filed before a victim’s 23rd birthday. Under the new law in New York, the Child Victims Act, which was ...

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Catholic Church, Boy Scouts To Be Slammed With Hundreds Of Lawsuits In New York

Years after child abuse survivors in New York started demanding changes to the state’s statutes of limitations, victims are finally getting a chance to have their cases heard in court. Hundreds of survivors are planning to file lawsuits on Wednesday against their alleged abusers and the institutions they claim covered up sex crimes as the state opens a one-year litigation window for cases that fell outside the previous statutes of limitations. Michael Pfau, an attorney at Seattle-based Pfau Cochran Vertetis Amala, told HuffPost that his law firm is filing more ...

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Deluge of sex abuse lawsuits expected to be filed under Child Victims Act

BUFFALO, N.Y. — In just one week, a long-awaited window will open for those who claim to be victims of child sex abuse, but who were previously denied the ability to seek legal retribution in New York State. It’s all part of the Child Victims Act passed by the state legislature and signed by the governor earlier this year. It will, for one year, essentially repeal the statute of limitations on child sexual abuse cases. Members of the legal system, including attorneys and court personnel, conservatively predict that several thousand lawsuits will be filed ...

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Change to New York Sex-Abuse Laws Expected to Spur A Wave of Lawsuits

Supporters, who fought for the law for more than a decade, say the lawsuits will provide long-awaited justice to victims of childhood sexual abuse. Critics argue some of these abusers died years ago, and that the legal and financial burdens will fall on institutions with few records to defend themselves. In addition to the look-back window, the law increases the maximum age to file civil suits to age 55 from 23. It also gives prosecutors additional time to file criminal charges. While some states, including Minnesota, Arizona and Hawaii, have opened similar windows, ...

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