Time is Running Out to File a Claim Against the Diocese of Harrisburg

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The deadline for survivors of clergy sexual abuse to file their claims with the Diocese of Harrisburg’s Survivor Compensation Program (SCP) is rapidly approaching.  All claims must be filed by Monday, May 13, 2019.

Anyone sexually abused as a child by a clergy member in the Diocese of Harrisburg is eligible to receive compensation from the SCP regardless of how many years ago the abuse occurred.  This includes anyone hurt by religious order priests and visiting priests. This opens the fund to a broader group of claimants than similar funds in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.

The SCP is administered by a neutral third party, meaning that each claim is evaluated independently by a mediation firm, not by the Diocese of Harrisburg itself, to determine the appropriate compensation for victims. The claims are generally resolved on a timeline that is much shorter than traditional litigation, and the process is completely confidential.  

The voluntary settlement fund is currently the only vehicle for most survivors of sexual abuse to take action against the Diocese of Harrisburg for what happened to them as children.  Pennsylvania’s restrictive statute of limitations makes filing a lawsuit impossible in most cases.

Once the fund closes, most survivors of sexual abuse in the Diocese of Harrisburg will have no other legal recourse, absent a major change in Pennsylvania’s statutes of limitations.  Due to the significant amount of time required to prepare the claims form, it is important to contact an attorney right away to begin the claims process.

The deadline for filing claims with the SCP is May 13, 2019, so if you are a survivor of clergy sexual abuse in the Diocese of Harrisburg, please contact us now to discuss your options.  You can reach us at (954) 641-2100 or at adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com.