January 05, 2005

Deadline set in church abuse lawsuits



Associated Press

Those intending to file a sexual abuse claim against the Archdiocese of Portland must do so by April 29.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Elizabeth Perris approved the deadline in a court order issued Monday.

Faced with a $135 million jury trial set to begin July 6, the archdiocese filed for bankruptcy, becoming the nation's first diocese to do so. The archdiocese faces $534 million in pending claims from 72 individual plaintiffs, according to a bankruptcy court filing.

The archdiocese will conduct a $300,000 notification program to alert potential claimants to the deadline, said Bud Bunce, spokesman for the archdiocese.

Those who want to pursue a claim, including the plaintiffs already suing the archdiocese, must file a proof-of-claim form. It requires those who had sexual contact with anyone working for the archdiocese to disclose certain details.

Posted by kshaw at January 5, 2005 07:03 AM