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Boy Scouts of America® Sexual Abuse Lawyers

You may be entitled to financial compensation. Read on to learn more about your options if you or someone you love has been a victim of abuse while in the care of the Boy Scouts of America®.

As sex abuse cases against the organization of the Boy Scouts of America® (BSA®) continue to increase exponentially, the BSA® is trying to declare bankruptcy – in an attempt to avoid responsibility for the sexual abuse of thousands of children who have been under its care. This sordid history spans decades.

The organization repeatedly–and with complete knowledge–protected, hid, and lied for the abusers, allowing sex abuse to run rampant throughout the ranks from the Boy Scouts®, Cub Scouts®, Webelos®, Blazer Scouts®, Sea Scouts®, and Explorer Scout Posts®. For those who dared to come forward, their voices were never heard and the allegations were swept under the rug.

Now, with justice finally on the horizon, the BSA® must not be allowed to escape the consequences. Victims of child sex abuse who suffered while in the care of the BSA® deserve justice.

More and more victims are now coming forward, as they feel it is finally safe to reveal these crimes in the company of thousands of others. It’s time for abusers to be brought to justice, and it is also time for the BSA® to accept responsibility for its part in protecting the sexual predators and allowing the abuse to continue, decade after decade.

If you were among those abused by people working with or within the BSA®, you may be entitled to financial compensation. Contact Hughes & Coleman today.

The Boy Scout's of America® Dubious 'Morals and Ethics'

The Boy Scouts of America® has been an American institution for over a century, dating from 1910 when William D. Boyce standardized uniforms and strove to establish the BSA® as a business headquartered in Washington, DC. It was modeled after the Boy Scouts movement in England, led by Sir Robert Baden-Powell who claimed Scouting was merely “applied Christianity.” This religious tone was further solidified in the Boy Scouts of America®, and a Scout was mandated to be “morally straight.”

For decades, despite child sex abuse, the BSA® held itself up as a name for morals, standards, and principles. The hypocrisy was rampant; at the same time that leaders of the organization denounced homosexuality as the realm of pedophiles, those working and volunteering for the “morally straight” BSA® were engaged in thousands of instances of pedophilia.

It’s time for the BSA® and its sex abusers to be held responsible for failing to protect vulnerable children.

Sexual and Mental Abuse Spanning More than Half a Decade

No one will ever know who the first child sex abuse victims of the BSA® might have been. Many of the cases currently under investigation date back to the mid-twentieth century. But the BSA® itself kept secret files, as early as the 1920s, on volunteers “credibly accused” of sexual assaults on children. There were nearly 8,000 men (and a handful of women) listed in these “perversion files,” but in almost all cases, the BSA® didn’t report these abusers to authorities, and the files were routinely destroyed.

Many BSA® abuse perpetrators were allowed to remain as scoutmasters or in other positions and simply moved from state to state to stay away from accusations, as reported by multiple victims. Some estimates put the total number of boys abused at about five figures, a number that rivals the allegations against the Catholic Church. The “perversion files” list more than 12,000 boys assaulted between 1944 and 2016 alone. Each and every one of these BSA® sexual abuse victims deserves justice–and recompense.

We may never know how the exact number of abuse cases that were simply brushed aside as if they didn’t even happen. However, we can fight to seek justice for the BSA® child sex abuse victims we do know about.

Making a Case Against the BSA®

Millions of parents sent their children to BSA® meetings, camps, and jamborees for over a century, thinking it was a safe place for their children, only to find decades later that their trust was gravely misplaced.

In 2007, six men in Oregon sued the BSA® over sexual abuse which they claimed had occurred at the hands of an assistant scoutmaster in the 1980s. Thousands of internal abuse records kept by the BSA® were presented to the jury, and the depth of the BSA®‘s involvement in covering up child sex crimes and protecting abusers became clear. Among the highest-profile cases so far, there has been one award of $18.5 million in punitive damages to the plaintiff in 2010.

The files show that scoutmasters who assaulted children were routinely encouraged to resign quietly and that the BSA® did not involve law enforcement. This left child sex abusers free to continue abusing children in their own communities; they were not prevented from targeting previously abused Scouts either.

Hundreds of cases have been filed against scoutmasters® and other individuals connected with the BSA® since 2007. Now, lawsuits are being filed against the national BSA®, directly against local troops, and against sponsoring organizations, including the LDS and many Catholic churches. The scope of this movement is just starting to be realized, and hundreds of new cases are being filed each month.

It’s time for the BSA® itself to be held accountable, and for BSA® abuse victims to receive compensation for the abuse they suffered as children at the hands of those who were supposed to be protecting and nurturing them. If you were one of these children, don’t put it off any longer. Now is the time to finally tell your story and join the thousands of others who were victimized by the “morally straight” leaders you trusted. Our BSA® sexual abuse lawyers can help you hold the abusers and other guilty parties accountable.

The BSA®, an Organization Worth Billions, Files Bankruptcy

As individual abuse cases against the BSA® continue to pile up, insurers are refusing to pay settlements, saying that the Boy Scouts® could have reasonably prevented the abuse but chose to do otherwise. In turn, the BSA® is suing the insurance companies–but the BSA®’s unwillingness to take responsibility doesn’t end there. In February, the organization chose to file Chapter 11 bankruptcy–while listing assets worth over $1 billion.

In court filings, the BSA® claimed to be facing 275 abuse lawsuits in state and federal courts around the country and that there are another 1,400 potential claims. The organization also claimed to have paid $150 million in settlements and legal costs within just three years, between 2017 and 2019.

The national organization is seeking to shield itself by promoting the establishment of a victim’s compensation fund and shifting the blame of the countless cover-ups onto the shoulders of individual counselors, without regard for the organization’s centralized stance on protecting child sex abusers.

This is an attempt to stop litigation and prevent new cases from being filed. Lawsuits brought against organizations in bankruptcy must follow different rules, many of which fail to favor the plaintiffs. In this case, the BSA® is attempting to rush through the proceedings to cut off the avalanche of lawsuits being filed and protect assets from being used to repay its victims.

Estimates put the total number of cases that will be filed against the BSA® at around 10,000, now that more than 30 states have already lifted the statute of limitations on child sexual abuse. This means that the BSA® would need to come up with $2 billion even to open negotiations for anything approaching fair recompense for victims.

This also means that there will be a deadline set by the bankruptcy court for filing claims. This deadline is usually around six months. This will limit the abuse victims’ time for filing a claim to come forward. And even for the victims that do come forward, once a settlement is reached, individual sexual abuse survivors will still not be heard, as they will not get their individual day in court. The one good thing that can come out of this settlement process is that compensation may come more quickly for everyone–without individual trials.

Why Choose Hughes & Coleman for Your BSA® Lawsuit

To confront a long-standing American institution like the Boy Scouts of America®, you need experienced lawyers who have access to the resources necessary to fight on many fronts against your powerful opponent.

The legal team at Hughes & Coleman knows how to manage child sex abuse cases against massive organizations, and we handle every case with compassion and professionalism.

What we can do for you after taking on your BSA® abuse case includes:

  • Thoroughly investigating how the actions of the BSA® put you at risk for abuse
  • Researching how the BSA® knew abuse was occurring and failed to protect you
  • Speaking to experts who can help us build a case for your immediate and long-term suffering
  • Gathering evidence to support your claim, including records from the BSA®
  • Fighting to get you the highest possible compensation for your losses
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When to Contact a Lawyer About Boy Scouts of America®

Hughes & Coleman has worked in many cases involving child sex abuse in the past. We have helped our clients win against the organizations that failed them and are liable for the abuse–and we can help you too.

As part of a BSA® abuse lawsuit, you may be due compensation for pain and suffering as well as punitive damages and any medical bills relating to the abuse.

Don’t delay in contacting a lawyer at Hughes & Coleman about your BSA® sex abuse case. The BSA® is trying to shut down new lawsuits being filed, and you could miss out on the opportunity to receive financial compensation.

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