Boy Scouts of America Files for Bankruptcy in Midst of Declining Membership, Flood of Sexual Abuse Lawsuits

(USA Today) Boy Scouts of America filed for bankruptcy protection this week amid declining membership and a drumbeat of child sexual abuse allegations that have illuminated the depth of the problem within the organization and Scouts’ failure to get a handle on it.

After months of speculation and mounting civil litigation, the Chapter 11 filing by the scouting organization’s national body was unprecedented in both scope and complexity. It was filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware Monday night.

The exact effects on Boy Scouts’ future operations are unknown, leading to speculation about the organization’s odds for survival, the impact on local troops and how bankruptcy could change the dynamic for abuse survivors who have yet to come forward. Some fear that at a minimum it will prevent survivors from naming their abuser in open court. …

In court filings, the Boy Scouts said it faces 275 abuse lawsuits in state and federal courts around the country, plus another 1,400 potential claims.

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