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Boy Scouts of America Bankruptcy Plan Misses Mark in Vote by Abuse Claimants

Meanwhile, the BSA’s former largest troop sponsor, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, commonly known as the Mormon church, has agreed to contribute $250 million into the fund for abuse claims involving the church. Congregations affiliated with the United Methodist Church have agreed to contribute $30 million into the fund, and a committee representing United Methodist churches that sponsored Scouting activities has agreed to help lead an effort to raise an additional $100 million from other troop sponsoring organizations.

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The sponsoring organizations, like settling insurers, would be released from further liability in exchange for their contributions to the fund.

All told, the contributions would bring the compensation fund for abuse claimants to more than $2.69 billion, which would be the largest aggregate sexual abuse settlement in U.S. history.

The Boy Scouts, based in Irving, Texas, sought bankruptcy protection in February 2020, seeking to halt hundreds of individual lawsuits and create a fund for men who say they were sexually abused as children. Although the organization was facing 275 lawsuits at the time, it found itself facing more than 82,000 sexual abuse claims in the bankruptcy case.

An ad hoc group called the Coalition of Abused Scouts for Justice has played a dominant role in the bankruptcy case and the formulation of the BSA’s reorganization plan, despite the existence of an official committee charged with representing the best interests of all abuse claimants. The coalition represents nearly 18,000 abuse claimants and is affiliated with more than two dozen law firms that collectively represent more than 60,000 claimants. It has been at the center of various disputes over information sharing, the huge number of claims that were filed, and how the BSA’s reorganization plan and trust distribution procedures were crafted.

The coalition said in a statement that it is continuing to negotiate with all parties, and that the plan provides survivors “the best and fastest avenue to closure, as well as just, fair and equitable compensation.”

This article originally appeared here.