Boy Scouts Near Bankruptcy Deal With Largest Victims Group
Youth group is expected to pay out victims through a combination of cash and insurance policies
The Boy Scouts of America filed for bankruptcy protection in February 2020 after a wave of civil litigation by abuse victims.
PHOTO: ERIK S. LESSER/EPA/SHUTTERSTOCK
By and Updated June 18, 2021 6:23 pm ET
The Boy Scouts of America are nearing a settlement with lawyers for sex-abuse victims that marks a major step for the youth group’s efforts to end the largest bankruptcy case ever filed over childhood abuse, people familiar with the matter said.
The Boy Scouts are close to agreeing on a victim-compensation framework with a coalition of victims’ law firms that represent the bulk of the 84,000 men who stepped forward to file claims over sexual abuse in scouting programs, the people familiar with the matter said. Details are still being hammered out, and there is no guarantee a final settlement will materialize, they said.
A deal with the law-firm coalition would mark a breakthrough for the Boy Scouts after 16 costly months under court protection. Any settlement proposal will still be subject to a vote by survivors and requires bankruptcy-court approval to take effect.
The Boy Scouts said Friday that a newly filed bankruptcy plan “incorporates a number of updates following constructive mediation, which we believe will garner significant support for confirmation.”
The youth group said it “is hopeful that this plan, or one very similar to it, will have the support of a supermajority of survivors.”