January 30, 2005

Diocese Ch. 11 bills so far: $791K


By Stephanie Innes, Arizona Daily Star

Azstarnet.comTucsonAZUSA - In the four months since the Roman Catholic Diocese of Tucson filed for federal Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, the case has amassed bills of nearly $800,000 for attorney and other business fees, according to recent court filings.

Bankruptcy experts say the tally of expenses in the case so far - $791,036 in what is mostly legal fees - is in keeping with that expected in a Chapter 11 case, although future expenses will depend on how long the case is in the court system.

An attorney working on the Chapter 11 case of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Portland, Ore., estimates that case's bankruptcy expenses are significantly higher than Tucson's so far - partly because the Portland archdiocese filed for Chapter 11 protection July 7, slightly more than two months before the Tucson diocese did.

There were no estimates available last week on bankruptcy costs for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Spokane, which filed for bankruptcy protection less than two months ago.

The Tucson diocese filed for federal Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization Sept. 20 in the face of 22 pending legal actions alleging sexual abuse of children by priests. The court has set a deadline of April 15 for those who believe they were sexually abused by a diocese priest to file a claim. The Chapter 11 plan could be approved this year if all the creditors can agree.

Posted by kshaw at January 30, 2005 05:09 AM