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(410) 685-2022
Sexual Assault 7/04/2024

Clergy Sex Abuse: What to Do If You Missed the Maryland Lawsuit Deadline

The Maryland Child Victims Act of 2023 offered survivors of childhood sexual abuse a chance to seek justice against their abusers and the institutions that failed to protect them, regardless of when the abuse occurred. The Maryland Child Victims Act of 2023 allowed many adults who suffered abuse at the hands of clergy during their childhood an opportunity to seek justice. However, the deadline to file claims associated with the Act has passed. If you are a survivor of clergy sex abuse in Maryland and missed this deadline, you may feel discouraged. It's important to understand that there are still options available to you.

Understanding the Maryland Clergy Sex Abuse Lawsuit 

The Maryland Child Victims Act created a temporary "window" for survivors to file civil lawsuits against their abusers and potentially the institutions that enabled the abuse, even if the abuse happened decades ago. This window, unfortunately, closed on May 31, 2024.

You Still Have Options

The Maryland Child Victims Act deadline may have passed, but there are still ways to seek justice. Here's what you can explore:

  • Class-action lawsuits: Law firms are investigating the possibility of these lawsuits, which combine claims from multiple survivors against a common defendant, potentially a religious organization. Joining a class-action can ease the financial burden of legal representation, increase pressure on the institution, and raise public awareness. Stay informed about legal developments and contact SB Law to see if a class-action might be a good fit for you.
  • Individual lawsuits: Maryland's statute of limitations for childhood sexual abuse lawsuits may still allow you to file an individual claim. This depends on when the abuse occurred, when you discovered its impact, and any exceptions to the statute. An attorney specializing in clergy sex abuse cases can evaluate your situation and determine if you qualify.

No matter which path you choose, legal counsel is crucial. An attorney can provide a free consultation, explain the legal complexities involved, explore all your options, and fight for the compensation and justice you deserve. Remember, there are also support groups, mental health professionals, and the National Sexual Assault Hotline available to help you on your healing journey. You are not alone. Contact SB Law today for a free consultation and discuss your options.

Survivors Filing for Class-Action Lawsuit

While the Maryland Child Victims Act window has closed for individual claims, there is a possibility of joining a class-action lawsuit. Class-action lawsuits allow multiple plaintiffs with similar claims to join forces and sue a single defendant. This can be a powerful tool for holding institutions accountable and achieving justice.

Here's what you should know about potential class-action lawsuits for clergy sex abuse in Maryland:

  • Current Status: Law firms are currently exploring the possibility of class-action lawsuits. It's important to stay updated on legal developments.
  • Benefits: Class-action lawsuits can offer several advantages, including shared legal costs and potentially stronger bargaining power.
  • How to Get Involved: If you're interested in joining a class-action lawsuit, contact SB Law. We can help you stay informed and connect you with relevant resources.

Limitations for Filing Individual Lawsuits in Maryland

Even though the Maryland Child Victims Act window has closed, you may still have the opportunity to file an individual lawsuit depending on your specific situation. Here's what you need to know:

Maryland has a traditional statute of limitations for civil lawsuits related to childhood sexual abuse. This time limit typically applies from the date the survivor discovers the abuse and its connection to their injuries.

An attorney specializing in clergy sex abuse cases can evaluate your specific circumstances and determine if you qualify to file an individual lawsuit under Maryland's statute of limitations. Factors like the date of abuse, the date of discovery, and any exceptions to the statute of limitations will be considered.

How SBWD Law Can Help

At SBWD Law, we understand the lasting trauma inflicted by clergy sex abuse. While the deadline for the Maryland Child Victims Act has passed, we are committed to helping survivors explore all available options. Our experienced attorneys can:

  • Provide a free consultation to discuss your situation and legal options.
  • Help you understand the complexities of clergy sex abuse cases in Maryland.
  • Explore the possibility of joining a class-action lawsuit, if applicable.
  • Evaluate your eligibility to file an individual lawsuit based on Maryland's statute of limitations.
  • Advocate for your rights and fight for the justice you deserve.

Even though the Maryland Child Victims Act deadline has passed, you are not alone. If you are a survivor of clergy sex abuse in Maryland, contact SBWD Law today to schedule a free consultation. We are here to support you and help you navigate the legal landscape.

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