Statement on Approval of Crosiers’ Settlement

From Thomas J. Abood, Chair, Reorganization Task Force, Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis

Today, Judge Kressel approved the plan of reorganization of the Crosiers on schedule with the objections of the Archdiocese and parishes addressed in negotiation prior to the hearing.  Despite commentary from others last week, the Archdiocese never sought to block the Crosiers’ plan of reorganization or its settlement with victims/survivors and doing so would not have benefited the Archdiocese in any way.

We are in favor of justly compensating all victims/survivors, including those asserting claims in the Crosiers’ case. Our concern expressed last week was that wording in the Crosiers’ plan would have resulted in 23 of the Crosiers’ victims/survivors collecting the Crosiers’ liability to them from the Archdiocese and its carriers. This would have been unfair to hundreds of Archdiocesan victims/survivors. Such collection would have reduced the Archdiocesan assets and insurance otherwise available to the other 400 victims/survivors who have claims against the Archdiocese. Had the Archdiocese not filed the objection, our insurance carriers would have taken the position that we had in effect waived the carriers’ rights to collect any payments they made for the Crosiers’ liability from the Crosiers, and that this waiver voided our coverage – meaning the Archdiocesan insurers wouldn’t need to contribute to the trust we have been building for three years.

Attorneys representing the Archdiocese have been discussing possible resolutions of this issue with attorneys representing the Crosiers for some time, which as I pointed out last week, was well known to counsel to the victims/survivors. As the settlement today shows, all that was needed was clarification that the Crosiers’ plan does not allow abuse claimants to collect Crosiers’ liability from the Archdiocese or its carriers.