Archdiocese adds money for abuse victims to bankruptcy plan

Archdiocese adds money for abuse victims to bankruptcy plan

Archdiocese adds money for abuse victims to bankruptcy plan

Archbishop Bernard Hebda greets parishioners after a news conference at St. Paul Cathedral after being appointed as Archbishop of the archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis on Thursday, March 24, 2016 in St. Paul, Minn. (Leila Navidi/Star Tribune via AP.)

The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis on Tuesday filed an updated bankruptcy plan that more than doubles the amount of money set aside for victims of clerical sexual abuse. In a statement, the archdiocese said the new plan raises the proposed trust fund for claimants from $65 million to more than $130 million.

ST. PAUL, Minn. — The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis on Tuesday filed an updated bankruptcy plan that more than doubles the amount of money set aside for victims of clerical sexual abuse.

In a statement, the archdiocese said the new plan raises the proposed trust fund for claimants from $65 million to more than $130 million.

Court filings indicate most of the new money is coming from settlements with additional insurance carriers. The original plan included settlements with three carriers worth over $33 million.

The archdiocese has now reached settlements with 11 of its 13 insurance carrier groups totaling over $92 million. The archdiocese said it still hopes to get “many millions of dollars” from the two remaining carriers that have not settled.

“Our goal all along is to promote healing, to bring forth goodwill, to express goodwill in our actions, not in our words,” archdiocese attorney Charles Rogers said. “We hope this is seen as action towards evidence of the archdiocese promoting goodwill.”

Victims’ attorney Jeff Anderson contends the new plan lets the insurers off the hook too easily.

“It has to be called out for what it is — it is a sham, scam, lie, misleading, deceptive and sad,” Anderson said. “It’s time for truth and transparency. It’s time for accountability.”

Anderson maintains that the archdiocese continues to shield its assets, and he wants to take on the insurance companies individually in court, KMSP-TV reported.

“They should make the insurance companies pay the way we can make them pay under our plan, where we can hold them directly accountable for their responsibility,” Anderson said.

The archdiocese filed for bankruptcy protection last year. The archdiocese’s updated bankruptcy plan still needs approval. The next court hearing is scheduled for Dec. 15.

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