Attorneys for Catholic Church and Priest Sexual Abuse Cases
Many sexual abuse victims come forward after years of suffering quietly. Are you or your loved one a victim of Connecticut clergy abuse?
Schedule a free case evaluation today with the personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC. Contact us at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call).
Our experienced team of legal representatives will fight to protect your rights and provide a safe place to talk about what happened. Our clergy sexual abuse lawyers are ready to hear your story in a confidential, private setting.
In recent years, stories of the horrific pattern of abuse in the three dioceses of Connecticut are beginning to emerge as well as in parishes and schools throughout the United States.
Despite the best efforts of the Catholic Church to keep these reports of the sexual abuse crisis secret for decades, the public is beginning to understand the full scope of what happened in the parishes and parochial schools at the hands of Catholic priests.
The Catholic dioceses are now being held accountable for the sexual exploitation of its clergy members that it covered up for decades.
Sexual abuse survivors can make the church pay for the actions of clergy and their failure to take action in the face of numerous reports of misconduct.
Why You Need an Abuse Lawsuit Attorney
In Connecticut, the diocese’ lawyers do not always settle a civil suit and try to find as many ways as they can to protect the Church.
To file the most effective lawsuit possible against the Catholic religious leaders, you may need abuse injury lawyers on your side. Call our law firm today to find out how we can help you.
When you are dealing with child sexual injury events, we can help even the abuse may have occurred decades ago. To resolve the case, you will need the help of a Connecticut clergy sexual abuse lawyer to work with you to hold the church and child sexual abuser accountable.
Our sexual abuse lawyers understand the pain and trauma involved in cases addressing the trauma of the sexually abused. Our personal injury law firm will listen in a confidential setting to what happened so we can start the legal process.
Contact us today at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) to schedule a free consultation. All information you discuss with us in a confidential setting remains confidential in an attorney-client relationship.
All of our child sex abuse cases are handled on a contingency fee basis where we only charge a legal fee when we are successful in obtaining a financial settlement for you.
Connecticut Roman Catholics
In Connecticut, the Catholic Church consists of the Archdiocese of Hartford and the dioceses of Norwich and Bridgeport. In the Hartford Archdiocese alone, there are 470,000 Catholics, 500 clergy members, and 216 parishes.
In the Bridgeport Diocese, there are over 400,000 Catholics spread across 82 parishes. There are just over 225,000 Catholics in the Diocese of Norwich.
Sex Abuse Lawsuit Settlements in Connecticut
Even the list of credibly accused abusers that was published by the CT Catholic leaders did not fully reveal the scope of the sexual abuse scourge in the organization. An analysis done by the Associated Press revealed that over 900 accused abusers were left off of the list.
The diocese used a conservative interpretation of the term “credible accuser” to favor the clergy at the expense of the general public who has a right to know who has been accused of sexual misconduct.
The Archdiocese of Hartford has paid out over $50 million to settle lawsuits filed against it by sexually abused victims. In Hartford, the scandals went beyond clergy and even to doctors at Catholic hospitals.
For example, the Church settled numerous abuse lawsuits connected to the actions of Dr. George Reardon, who was accused of molesting several patients.
In the early 2000s, there were a number of cases filed against the Hartford Archdiocese. In 2005, the Archdiocese entered into a $22 million settlement of forty-three sexual abuse lawsuits that stemmed from the actions of fourteen priests.
Many new personal injury sexual abuse cases are being filed against the Archdiocese of Hartford and other dioceses throughout the state.
The Dioceses of Bridgeport Scandal
Some of the spotlight on statewide sex abuse cases resulted from a 2009 Connecticut Supreme Court order requiring the release of thousands of legal documents and court case records from lawsuits filed against the Catholic officials in the state.
The state court ruling was the result of numerous sexual abuse victim lawsuits that were filed against the Diocese of Bridgeport.
Many people will recognize the name Cardinal Edward Egan, the previous Archbishop of New York and prominent Catholic clergy official. Before his New York assignment, Egan was the head of the Diocese of Bridgeport.
Twenty-three lawsuits were filed against the Church and settled during his time at that position. After he left the Diocese of Bridgeport, Cardinal Egan apologized for his lack of action in investigating and handing over evidence about credibly accused clergy predators to law enforcement.
However, he later retracted his apology, claiming that he did everything right. The situation in the Diocese of Bridgeport was so bad that there was legislation proposed that would have stripped the bishop’s control of the diocese.
A 2019 judicial report states that Bridgeport bishops failed to fulfill their “moral and legal responsibilities” in handling allegations of sexual abuse that harmed many victims. The Bridgeport diocese report even found that then-Bishop Egan took a threatening attitude towards sexual abuse survivors.
In 2019, the victims’ efforts resulted in the Diocese of Norwich publishing a list of Roman Catholic diocesan priests who have been credibly accused of child victim abuse. This list consisted of a total of forty-three priests.
The Statute of Limitations in Connecticut for Bringing a Child Sex Abuse Case
Sexual abuse claims, like other types of personal injury matters, must be filed within a time constraint known as the statute of limitations. Your failure to bring a claim within the statute of limitations can result in your case getting thrown out of court and you will not recover any compensation.
Consequently, you should consult with an experienced sexual abuse lawyer so he or she can examine the circumstances of your case and determine the time frame for filing a case.
Chapter 926 Sec 52-577d of Connecticut law gives the statute of limitations for adults to file sexual abuse lawsuits that they suffered as children.
The abuse victims have until 30 years (their 51st birthday) after they reach the age of adulthood to file a lawsuit for misconduct against the sexual abuse predator and any organization or group that may have responsible or participated in a sexual abuse cover-up.
Last year, the state General Assembly changed the sexual abuse recovery law and added three additional years onto the period where sex abuse adults and children may file a claim for tangible damages, pain, and suffering. T
he law also lifted the age restriction for filing a claim in the years after the sexually abused victim was injured.
Citizens have pushed lawmakers to eliminate the time limits for filing civil sexually abused victim claims against their abuser and any group associated with the harm. However, the Roman Catholic officials have vigorously lobbied against and fought these efforts.
State courts have retroactively applied the 30-year statute of limitations for abuse that occurred before 2002. The Church tried to fight the legal filing extension in court, but the Connecticut Supreme Court upheld decisions that allowed for retroactive application to take the cases to trial.
Victims Want More Time To Sue
In October 2019, an investigative report revealed the Bridgeport Diocese had covered up clergy sex abuse cases as far back as 1953. The investigation revealed over seventy predatory clergy members victimizing almost three hundred sex abuse survivors.
While the current law allows a victim to sue their abuser and the church, claims and lawsuits must be filed thirty years after they reached adulthood. Potential plaintiffs hope that the investigative report reveals the need for older victims to have more time after the statute of limitations expires.
Roman Catholic Dioceses in CT
In Connecticut, Roman Catholics are the single largest religious group of all faiths statewide. One Archdiocese of Hartford, three dioceses (Bridgeport, Norwich (parts of New York), and Providence (including all of Rhode Island), and their Bishops manage parishes in eight counties statewide (listed below).
Archdiocese of Hartford
134 Farmington Ave
Hartford, CT 06105
Phone: (860) 541-6491
- Archbishop Leonard P. Blair
- Archbishop Daniel A. Cronin
- Bishop Juan Miguel Betancourt, SEMV
- Bishop Christie Macaluso
- Bishop Peter Rosazza
- Most Reverend John F. Whealon, 1969-1991
- Most Reverend Henry J. O’Brien, 1945-1968
- Most Reverend Maurice F. McAuliffe, 1934-1944
Diocese of Bridgeport
238 Jewett Avenue
Bridgeport, CT 06606
Phone: (203) 416-1400
- Bishop Frank J. Caggiano
Diocese of Norwich
Norwich, CT 06360-4328
Phone: (860) 887-9294
- Bishop Michael R. Cote
- Former Bishop Daniel A. Hart, 1995-2003
- Former Bishop Daniel P. Reilly
- Former Bishop Vincent J. Hines
- Former Bishop Bernard J. Flanagan
Diocese of Providence
Chancery Office Building
One Cathedral Square
Providence, Rhode Island 02903
Phone: (401) 278-4500
- Bishop Thomas J. Tobin
Damages in a Sexual Abuse Lawsuit Involving Clergy Abuse
Survivors of unwanted sexual abuse who file civil cases may be eligible for the following in financial compensation from their sexual abuser and religious organization, including:
- Pain and suffering damages, including traumatic stress disorder injuries they suffered and continue to experience
- The out of pocket cost for victim medical and psychological care
- Any lost earnings if the unwanted sexual abuse impacted their ability to work
- Punitive damages if the behavior of religious leaders was egregious
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of consortium
All of your sexual abuse attorneys are committed to ensuring that each of our clients receives full and fair compensation for their case. In some situations, we can assist you with getting counseling from licensed therapists who have helped other sexual abuse victims.
We appreciate the significant impact childhood sexual abuse has on all areas of a victims life and we work to relay the significance of the damage to a judge, mediator or lawyer representing the diocese to ensure the value of your case is maximized.
Our law firm is mindful of the impact that a clergy abuse case can have on the victim. During all phases of litigation, we work within the confines of your wishes in terms of litigating the case or resolving it discreetly. Regardless of your desires, our legal team will stand by your side during all court proceedings and depositions. You will never stand alone.
Hire a Connecticut Clergy Sexual Abuse Lawyer
Need a sexual injury attorney to handle your claim against a clergy abuser? Call our sexual abuse injury law firm today to learn more about your legal rights in a sexual assault lawsuit.
Even if the incidents happened many years ago, victims may still be able to file a civil action. Your trial lawyer can quickly resolve a confidential abused children case with tact and discretion while fighting hard for your legal rights.
Need an attorney? Contact us at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone number) to set up your free consultation.
Your sexual abuse lawyer will handle your case on a contingency basis, meaning you owe us nothing unless we are successful in helping you obtain financial compensation. Our attorneys help fight for sexual abuse victims to get the justice that your family deserves.