The Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis
What it Means for Someone Who Has Been Abused
On January 16, 2015, the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. A deadline of August 3, 2015, was subsequently set for survivors of clergy child sexual abuse, and other creditors, to file a claim in bankruptcy court. The bankruptcy case is currently ongoing and several issues need to be addressed before the case can be resolved.
Jeff Anderson & Associates represents hundreds of survivors of childhood sexual abuse across Minnesota and has for almost 30 years. Having represented clergy abuse survivors in diocesan bankruptcies in states such as Wisconsin, California, Iowa, and Delaware, we bring valuable experience and understanding to the bankruptcy and can help support your claim.
Our lawyers are experienced Minnesota litigators who have had proven success in removing barriers that in the past prevented adult victims of childhood clergy abuse from seeking justice. Within the last two years under the Child Victims Act, Jeff Anderson & Associates, along with numerous courageous survivors, were able to force the Archdiocese to publicly release the names of over 60 priests accused of child sexual abuse and release thousands of pages of internal church documents; we have also made the top officials and perpetrators in the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis answer questions under oath about clergy sexual abuse.
In October 2013, as a result of the settlement of the Doe 1 v. Archdiocese of St. Paul & Minneapolis, et al., case, the Archdiocese agreed to disclose additional names of clerics with substantiated claims of child sexual abuse. The Doe 1 lawsuit was filed in July 2013 under a Minnesota law, the Child Victims Act, passed by the Minnesota legislature in May 2013. This law created a three-year window for sexual abuse survivors to file claims for the abuse they suffered as children. This window closes on May 25, 2016.
Beginning in December 2013, the Archdiocese began publicly naming clergy members with substantiated claims of sexual abuse of minors. Additional names were made public in February, May and October of 2014 and in February 2015. To-date, 68 clergy members have been named as having substantiated claims of sexual abuse of a minor.
As a result of the Archdiocese’s failure to protect children and contribution to the unspeakable harm done to three abuse victims of Fr. Curtis Wehmeyer, the Archdiocese was criminally charged on June 5, 2015. The case is ongoing in Ramsey County District Court and is only the second time a United States diocese has been criminally charged.
Jeff Anderson & Associates is recognized as the nation’s premier law firm to represent victims of childhood sexual abuse. We are smart, tough and relentless, but the virtue that ultimately sets us apart is our compassion. We are people who feel deeply and work tirelessly in response to an unjust world. We have a reputation for being the best at what we do, and that begins and ends with our ability to meet each client’s unique needs while we support, protect and guide survivors along their journey towards justice and healing.
All of the survivors who came forward in the Archdiocese bankruptcy have enhanced the effort to hold abusers and the institutions that protected them and covered up their crimes accountable. Also, and just as importantly, they are raising awareness and protecting future generations of children from abuse.