October 14, 2005

Lawyer seeks to reinstate suit against archdiocese

Philadelphia Inquirer

Berks County attorney Jay Abramowitch has petitioned the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to reverse its recent denial of his request for an appeal in Meehan v. the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Meehan seeks to establish a right of plaintiffs to sue an institution, such as a diocese, for fraudulently concealing knowledge of its employees' sexual abuse of minors. Abramowitch and other plaintiff lawyers argue that such concealment pauses the statute of limitations, even for sexual assaults long ago, and allows lawsuits to proceed to trial.

Pennsylvania Superior Court in March unanimously rejected the "fraudulent concealment" argument, upholding a Philadelphia Common Pleas Court opinion that any sexual assault, even of a minor, is a form of battery that starts the statute of limitations running immediately.

Posted by kshaw at October 14, 2005 10:54 AM