The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is considering dropping its previously agreed $650 million settlement with its insurer Hartford Financial Services Group, as sex-abuse victims oppose the agreement.
In April, the BSA proposed compensating victims of sex abuse through a settlement with The Hartford – which had issued policies to the youth group in the 1970s. But in documents filed last week with the US Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, DE, victim groups said that they would vote down any compensation plan that includes the BSA’s settlement with The Hartford – a settlement the victim groups say is inadequate.
The BSA has stated that if it cannot reach an accord with victim groups in the coming weeks over the settlement, it would seek guidance from the judge presiding over its insolvency. If no solution or compromise could be found, BSA said it will explore dropping the Hartford settlement altogether.
A Hartford spokesperson told The Wall Street Journal that the insurer’s settlement with the BSA was agreed to after “extensive” negotiations. The representative also indicated that if the deal is not approved by the bankruptcy court, The Hartford would staunchly defend its position in related coverage litigation.
“We believe the agreement is a positive step towards a global resolution which will support the BSA’s efforts to equitably compensate survivors,” the insurance spokesperson told WSJ.