Diocese of Duluth Seeks Bankruptcy Protection
By Tom Corrigan
Wall Street Journal
December 7, 2015
The Roman Catholic Diocese of Duluth, Minn., filed for bankruptcy Monday after being hit with an $8.4 million verdict in a clergy sex abuse case.
The diocese, which spans 10 counties in northeastern Minnesota, filed for chapter 11 protection in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Duluth, court papers show.
Last month, a jury awarded $8.4 million to a man who says he was sexually abused in the late 1970s by a priest serving in the Diocese of Duluth. The diocese, which has said it is considering an appeal, says it knew nothing about the abuse and couldn't have prevented it.
In a statement on the jury verdict posted on the diocese’s website, it said it was contemplating bankruptcy as a way to compensate abuse victims while preserving the diocese’s pastoral and charitable mission.
“With other victims of clergy sexual abuse pursuing their cases in the courts and a finite pool of resources from which they might be compensated for their suffering, bankruptcy might ensure a more equitable distribution,” the diocese said.