Boy Scouts of America files for bankruptcy protection over sex abuse lawsuits

Facing "mounting legal costs" over lawsuits filed by victims of sexual abuse, the Boy Scouts of America has filed for bankruptcy protection. NBC News reports that the move pushes the lawsuits to federal bankruptcy court, and that the organization intends to establish a trust to compensate victims.

Michael Pfau, whose Seattle-based law firm, Pfau, Cochran, Veretis and Amala, represents close to 300 people who say they were abused as Scouts in 30-plus states, called the filing historic.

"It will be far larger in terms of the numbers of victims and far more complicated than any of the bankruptcies we've seen so far involving the Catholic Church," Pfau said. Those bankruptcies involved individual dioceses or archdioceses, Pfau said, while "this involves victims from all 50 states and several U.S. territories … You're looking at thousands of abuse survivors making claims …This is much bigger than the bankruptcy filings involving the Catholic Church."