Rochester Archdiocese files for bankruptcy amid sex abuse claim obligations

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Rochester Archdiocese files for bankruptcy amid sex abuse claim obligations

The Catholic Archdiocese of Rochester Thursday filed for bankruptcy protection amid its massive financial and legal exposure to child sexual abuse claims.

“This is a very difficult and painful decision,” said Rochesters Bishop Salvatore R. Matano in a Letter to the Faithful and video message Thursday.

“After assessing all reasonable possibilities to satisfy the claims, reorganization is considered the best and fairest course of action for the victims and for the well-being of the Diocese, its parishes, agencies and institutions. We believe this is the only way we can provide just compensation for all who suffered the egregious sin of sexual abuse, while ensuring the continued commitment of the Diocese to the mission of Christ,” the bishop said.

The Child Victims Act approved by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the New York Legislature earlier this year opens up a one-year, one-time only period to allow victims to seek civil action, regardless of how long the abuse occurred.

The law extends the statute of limitations to allow for criminal charges against sexual abusers until their victims turn 28 for felony cases, up from the current 23.

It also allows victims to seek civil action against their abusers and institutions that enabled them until they turn 55.

The Rochester churchs bombshell raises questions about how many other faith-based and other institutions will file for bankruptcy protection to avoid shuttering their doors.

The Archdiocese of New York, which includes Manhattan, is not contemplating filing for bankruptcy protection, said Joseph ZwilRead More – Source