The Boy Scouts of America have asked the judge overseeing its bankruptcy process to prolong an injunction stopping plaintiffs from filing sexual abuse claims against local Boy Scouts councils and organizations, the Associated Press reported last week.
As it currently stands, the injunction on sex abuse claims against Boy Scouts local councils expires on March 19, 2021. The Boy Scouts has requested that the injunction be extended until July 19, 2021. The organization’s attorneys argue that if the injunction is extended, this will help the organizations’ restructuring efforts, and allow local councils to contribute to a settlement fund for sexual abuse claims against them. They also argue that if the bankruptcy court lifts the injunction and permits new sex abuse claims against the Boy Scouts, this will make it “make it difficult, if not impossible, for the BSA to both equitably compensate abuse survivors” and perform other charitable activities, according to the Associated Press.
The Boy Scouts made this request in court last Monday, following a separate request by insurance companies, who seek “to serve document requests on 1,400 people who have filed sexual abuse claims and to question scores of them under oath” as part of an effort to identify possible fraud. The AP notes that there have been more than 95,000 sexual abuse claims filed against the Boy Scouts of America as part of its bankruptcy process, as well as roughly “860 lawsuits in more than 110 state and federal courts.”
The tort claimants committee representing abuse victims in the process “has been frustrated with the response by local councils to requests for document production and information on their financial assets,” according to the AP, and has alleged that local councils are withholding information about its assets, including a $345.4 million note that the Boy Scouts claim is a restricted asset (and therefore unavailable to creditors), but which the tort claimants committee argues should be unrestricted.
More information on the Boy Scouts of America bankruptcy process, and the filing of child sexual abuse complaints against the organization, is available via the Associated Press.