Many Sexually Abused Boy Scouts Can File for Compensation for Their Suffering
One of the most challenging and yet important events in any adult life is to come forward and openly share that you were sexually abused as a child by an authority figure like a Boy Scout troop leader or his assistant. It takes great courage to acknowledge your truth in a world where so many emotionally immature people and callous groups prefer cover-ups and denial.
Yet if you are ready to take this step now and file a lawsuit, you’ll finally have a chance to fully heal and live openly as who you really are – a person of merit who never deserved any abuse.
There is no shame in coming forward – the Scouts USA has issued a clear statement
In August of 2019, the Scouts USA (the BSA’s new name after admitting girls) issued a statement, clearly indicating that there have been times since the organization was first created when it did not properly address or handle childhood sex abuse cases. The Scouts USA also said that it did not honor its commitment “to protect scouts, the values or our organization and the [types of] procedures we have in place today.”
In fact, this August 2019 statement appears to invite new claims by those who were abused.
We care deeply about all victims of abuse, and sincerely apologize to anyone
who was harmed during their time in scouting…We believe victims, we
support them, we pay for counseling by a provider of their choice, and we
Our law firm is committed to helping clients like you file lawsuits so you can obtain the just compensation you deserve from Scouts USA. While it is true that the organization has filed for bankruptcy to protect its many financial assets – that has been partially done to try and be sure all valid claimants receive some percentage of the group’s assets.
What follows is additional information you are likely seeking about whether you should pursue a claim and the types of facts required to support your lawsuit.
What goals or skills has the BSA/Scouts USA tried to pass on to young people?
What is now known as the “Boy Scout movement” was originally started in England back
in 1908 by Lieutenant General Robert S. S. Baden-Powell, the author of a book entitled,
“Scouting for Boys.” Originally designed to help boys between the ages of 11 and 14 (or 15), the
Boy Scouts sought to teach these children good citizenship traits, “chivalrous behavior” and strong outdoor skills. During more recent days, the Scout Mission has been to largely teach young people “how to make ethical and moral choices” during their lives — among other traits and stated goals. In 2019, girls were officially allowed to join Scouts USA.
What types of facts or evidence must I be prepared to share about the abuse I suffered?
The name of the group you joined as a Boy Scout – and the city and state where it was located. We are required to provide as much proof as you have, so we can document the validity of your claim for the court.
The name of the group scout leader or his formal assistant who abused you
The approximate time during which your abuse occurred. Even one incident of being sexually abused by a Boy Scout authority figure can support a claim.
Information about where the abuse occurred. This might include a reference to a Boy Scout camp you attended, an overnight camping trip, abuse that occurred in the Boy Scout leaders home — or any other location you recall where this authority figure abused you.
While we will be interested to learn if you reported the abuse at the time — we realize this is often not done. After all, many scouts felt too embarrassed, ashamed, or confused by what was done to them. The Boy Scouts of America taught them to fully trust those who ran the programs.
Should you still have BSA certificates, badges, or other materials from those days, you may want to share those with us.
Being physically touched in a manner designed to sexually excite you or the Boy Scout leader. Nearly all these activities likely occurred when you were alone with this adult.
Being forced to view pornographic materials designed to sexually excite you or the Boy Scout leader or employee.
Having the BSA employee expose his genitals to you – regardless of whether he insisted that you touch him in any way.
Being required to allow the Boy Scout leader to photograph you either nude or posing in a sexually suggestive way.
Having the BSA employee demand that you try to sexually excite him in any manner with your body.
Enduring the penetration of any part of your body in a sexual manner by the Boy Scout authority figure.
Being asked to perform any type of sex act with another Boy Scout, at the employee’s direction.
Having the BSA leader send you sexually suggestive photos or messages by text or email. Also, receiving phone calls from this leader during which sexually inappropriate topics were discussed.
While this is not a fully exhaustive list of sexually abusive behaviors that might be the focus of your claim, they should help provide you with an idea of the types of inappropriate – or sexually wrongful behaviors – that can justify a lawsuit filed on your behalf.
Brief set of facts known about Boy Scout of America attempts to hide all known abuse
Unfortunately, the Boy Scouts began keeping private files here in America about alleged child sex abusers by the 1920s. A sexual abuse lawsuit filed in Pennsylvania in 2019, helped reignite the public’s knowledge of all these terrible acts. In that lawsuit, it was noted that former boy scouts had come forward, wanting to name 350 more adults who abused them as children.
Also in 2019, a child sex abuse expert testified in a different lawsuit that there were actually about 8,000 people named in those files involving the 350 possible “new” child predators. It is believed that most or all had not been named in the Boy Scouts of America private or secret files.
Regarding the Boy Scout’s February 2020 bankruptcy filing, the organization has stated that this first-time, historical filing had two key goals. One is to compensate the past victims of abuse and the other is to move past this [tragic] situation so the organization can “continue to carry out its mission for years to come.” Time magazine wrote a lengthy June 2019 article about all the abused scouts that is well worth reading.
How our lawyers will interact with you when you contact us and come forward
Our lawyers will treat you with the respect you deserve. We are here for you. Do not remain a
silent victim. Hold the Boy Scouts organization responsible and accountable. By coming forward, you will not only have the chance to obtain justice for yourself – you will help us (and other former Boy Scouts around the country) document this abuse so that it will be far less likely to occur in any organization claiming to serve boys or girls in the future.
Please know that when you contact us about filing this type of claim, we will interact with you on a strictly confidential basis – always protecting your personal identity as much as the law allows. While a small number of our employees will help us build your file, your privacy will always remain important to us.
We understand that seeking justice does not mean someone should have to forfeit more information than is necessary – or reveal absolutely everything about himself simply because he was sexually abused. The questions we will ask you will be designed to help you be prepared for different questions that might be posed to you during a deposition or other stage of litigation.
How long may it take for this lawsuit to be settled or go to trial?
While we will make every effort to move your case along in a very prompt manner, we cannot guarantee any specific timeframe. We must follow all the guidelines and procedures that the United Stated Bankruptcy Court handling the Boy Scouts of America Chapter 11 bankruptcy issues.
We can, however, tell you that this type of case can take one or more years, depending on whether the court designs a streamlined method for processing all the cases. Getting one’s day in court can often take time – yet most abuse victims are glad they pursued justice for themselves – and to help protect other innocent children in the future.
If you were sexually abused by a Boy Scouts of America troop leader, hired assistant or other authority figure of the organization, you need to contact our New York City Boy Scout abuse law firm. We have handled cases like yours in the past and know how to respectfully interact with those in sensitive positions like yours. Please know that we will carefully prepare your case and then fight hard for the maximum compensation available for your claim.
We will make every effort to be sure that the courts know that what happened to you matters and that your needs as an individual must not be ignored nor disrespected. We will keep you updated as your case progresses — once we agree to file a lawsuit on your behalf.