On Monday, September 30, some Pennsylvania dioceses will close the Victims Compensation Fund available to victims of clergy abuse. The Allentown, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and Scranton dioceses will cease the ability for victims to apply for compensation for the abuse they endured by credibly accused clergy members. Last year, these and other Pennsylvania dioceses created compensation funds in which to offer settlements to clergy abuse victims throughout the state. According to administrators of the funds, the dioceses paid out around $35 million to more than 240 victims.
In August 2018, the Pennsylvania Attorney General, Josh Shapiro, released an incendiary report listing credibly accused priests who committed acts of abuse against minors in the state of Pennsylvania. The report prompted dioceses to create compensation funds for victims, but unfortunately, the funds may not be enough to hold abusers accountable for their actions, and they may fail to remove the stigma or ease the trauma that many clergy abuse victims may encounter. Despite efforts to change the statute of limitations on filing older sex abuse claims, the proposal to change the laws never came to a vote. A Senate hearing on Wednesday, though, will revisit the possibility of allowing a “window” in which to file the claims.
If you or someone you love dealt with childhood sex abuse by a clergy member, our Pennsylvania clergy abuse lawyers at Williams Cedar will examine your case and provide compassionate and skilled legal representation to you. To schedule a free and confidential consultation, please call us today at 215-557-0099 or contact us online We serve clients throughout Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and nationwide from our offices in Philadelphia and Haddonfield, New Jersey.