Parallel Justice Podcast #34 – The Playbook: Statutes of Limitations

Published on Jun 28, 2023

Coming from the National Center for Victims of Crime, Parallel Justice is a trauma informed and survivor centered podcast that investigates civil justice sought for criminal acts. Dive into the realities of our criminal justice system alongside expert attorneys who took on the cases that dominated the headlines and changed our society. This is not your typical True Crime show. Parallel Justice is an honest, empowering investigation into how the Justice system actually works, where it fails, and how survivors can seek accountability.

The National Center for Victims of Crime advocates for victims’ rights, trains professionals who work with victims and survivors of crime and serves as a trusted source of information on victims' issues. To learn more about the National Center for Victims of Crime, visit https://victimsofcrime.org/.

Access a civil justice attorney through the National Crime Victim Bar Association, the nation's first professional association of attorneys and expert witnesses dedicated to helping victims seek justice through the criminal system visit https://victimbar.org/.

Compassionate, confidential support is available through the VictimConnect Resource Center via call, chat or text at https://victimconnect.org/ and 1-855-484-2846.

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The Hosts

Renée is the Executive Director of the National Center for Victims of Crime. She also serves as the Director of the National Crime Victim Bar Association, an affiliate program of the National Center. Prior to taking the helm of the NCVBA, Renée was the …

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The Catholic church has a go-to playbook to avoid liability in child sex abuse cases. Last time, we talked to Jeff Anderson and Mike Finnegan, attorneys from Jeff Anderson & Associates who represent victims of childhood sexual crimes, about how the Catholic church utilizes bankruptcy to avoid helping victims. This time, we speak with them again to discuss one other way the Church has historically escaped liability—by abusing statutes of limitations.

Statutes of limitations are time limits that legal claims must be filed during in order to become viable cases. They can differ from state to state. Statutes of limitations make sense in most personal injury cases, but for cases involving child sex abuse, a deadline of a couple of years is simply not enough time for many victims to come forward—especially when the crime is committed by someone the child thinks they can trust, like a member of the clergy. The Catholic church has been known to groom or coerce victims into silence until the statute passes, escaping liability completely.

Tune in to learn how this devastating playbook has developed and about its consequences.