Clergy Sexual Abuse Lawsuits – Delays Expected in Buffalo

Posted on: May 18, 2020 Catholic Church Sexual Abuse

Buffalo Diocese Lawsuit Delays ExpectedVictims of clergy sexual abuse with cases against the Diocese of Buffalo should expect delays in compensation awards. In a January ruling by Judge Deborah A. Chimes, Supreme Court of Erie Country, she noted the particular victim (plaintiff) should receive damages for abuse suffered. However there is a catch causing a delay in getting compensation from the Diocese of Buffalo. The Diocese of Buffalo filed for bankruptcy. This filing effectively paused all lawsuits and legal proceedings against the dioceses.

It is important to note that Buffalo is not the first diocese in New York to file for bankruptcy. In September of 2019, the Rochester Diocese also filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Critics of the Catholic church are citing bankruptcy protection as the new strategy which would allow the dioceses to shelter its assets from the increasing number of clergy abuse lawsuits and potentially lower the payouts from sexual abuse settlements.

The attorneys representing the victim in this case have filed a motion to appeal Judge Chimes ruling. The appeal has been made to the Fourth Department Appellate Division in Rochester. If the appellate court doesn’t overrule Judge Chimes, the plaintiff’s (victim) trial would be on hold for two years.

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