The Catholic Church is turning to outside arbiters to reckon with its history of sexual abuse. But skeptics argue that its legacy of evasion continues.
An Independent Reconciliation and Compensation Program, run by Feinberg and Biros, began hearing and processing claims of priestly sexual abuse for the Archdiocese of New York in the fall of 2016. Feinberg and Biros subsequently established compensation programs in the Dioceses of Brooklyn (which includes Queens) and Rockville Centre (Long Island), and upstate, in the Dioceses of Syracuse and Ogdensburg. Their portfolio ...
An attorney who targets accused pedophile priests says lawsuits filed under New York’s Child Victims Act could ravage the finances of some Catholic religious orders.
According to Michael Pfau, a Seattle-based lawyer who has represented scores of clergy abuse survivors, there are more than 170 religious orders operating in New York. Many have their national or regional headquarters in the state.
"I think religious orders, for whatever reason, have flown under the radar. Especially in New York State," said Pfau.
According to data compiled at Georgetown ...
Law firms in New York state have already started working on several cases soon to be brought by victims of child sexual abuse after a bill was signed into law earlier this month that extended the period of time during which those claims can be filed.
Several of those firms have also put money into the new law, called the Child Victims Act, by paying to advertise their services when users search for it on the internet. So far, many have received a return on that investment.
One such firm is the Marsh Law Firm, which sponsored an ad to appear near the top of search ...
Class actions are designed for circumstances where the victims have identical or nearly identical harm, or where such small monetary amounts are at stake that individual suits are implausible.
This cannot be permitted to happen to the sex abuse victims in New York, after 15 years of enormous effort to pass the Child Victims Act, who are supposed to be receiving a chance at full justice. The good news is that the class action lawsuit was filed in federal court where class actions must give victims a right to “opt out” of the lawsuit. So every victim will have the opportunity to think carefully about whether a “quickie” class action settlement is truly in her or his best interest.
The public policy problem, though, is that this is a great way for lawyers to benefit while survivors are once again made second-class participants in their own journey to justice. It’s bad enough they were victimized as children; and then they were re-victimized by insultingly short SOLs; but to be re-victimized after the CVA passes by not being taken individually and seriously in their own lawsuit constitutes the wrong result. It violates the spirit and the intent of the Child Victims Act so many labored so long to actualize.
Decades before he became a registered sex offender, 60-year-old John Stella was an Assistant Scoutmaster dogged by allegations of abuse in an upstate Boy Scout troop.
Decades before John Stella became a registered sex offender, he was an Assistant Scoutmaster dogged by allegations of abuse in upstate NY“He was a sadist,” one ex-Scout said. “I can still think of details. Like the smell of this guy’s chewing tobacco is still in my nose"The Boy Scouts of America told the I-Team Stella’s 1989 arrest was the first time the national headquarters knew of any ...
The legislation, known as the Child Victims Act, passed the Democrat-controlled Senate and Assembly on Monday. Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo intends to sign the bill into law. The act would extend the statute of limitations going forward and create a one-year window for civil suits now barred by the statute of limitations.
ALBANY — For more than a decade, victims of childhood sexual abuse in New York have asked lawmakers here for the chance to seek justice — only to be blocked by powerful interests including insurance companies, private schools and leaders from the Roman Catholic Church and Orthodox Jewish communities.
As activists and Democratic officials pushed to strengthen protections for child abuse victims, those opposing interests — wealthy and closely tied to members of the then Republican-controlled State Senate — warned that permitting victims to revive decades-old ...
The Democrats` takeover of the formerly Republican-controlled Senate seems almost certain to produce a more victim-friendly policy in place of one of the nation`s most restrictive laws. In New York, victim advocacy groups and their allies in the Legislature have tried for a dozen years to loosen the statute of limitations.
The Child Victims Act is expected to pass in the New York Legislature on Monday, extending the statute of limitations for child sexual abuse claims.Currently, a victim must bring a claim for child sex abuse by the age of 21 if it is against an institution such as the Catholic Church, a summer camp or the Boy Scouts. The age goes up to 23 if against an individual.
If the Child Victims Act passes, it would increase the age to 55 for both.
"There's no statute of limitations on painful memories,” says Peter, who says his dorm monitor at Mount Saint Michael Academy ...