Shaheen & Gordon lawyers are pursuing individual lawsuits on behalf of victims of abuse at the Sununu Youth Services Center in Manchester, NH, formerly the Youth Development Center (YDC).
As has been widely reported, hundreds of victims have come forward to say they were abused over multiple decades, from as far back as the 1960s to as recently as a couple of years ago. Almost all the victims were minors when they were abused, and more than half of these claims involve incidents of sexual abuse.
If you or someone you know was abused during time spent at Sununu Youth Services Center, contact us today for a free, confidential consultation.
Bipartisan Bill Proposes Offensively Low Settlement Fund
New Hampshire state representatives proposed a settlement fund of $100 million to resolve these abuse claims, as reported by AP News. Under the bipartisan bill, victims would waive their right to file individual claims in court. Their compensation would also be capped at $1.5 million each, an amount that may be paid over an entire decade.
This settlement proposal is terribly lacking. Frankly, abuse victims deserve better.
Class Actions vs. Individual Lawsuits
While a class action was attempted on behalf of all 200+ victims, class actions are not always the best approach for situations like this, where every victim’s experience and damages are unique. On May 27, 2021, a New Hampshire court dismissed the class-action suit for this very reason. The important thing to note is that victims can still proceed with individual lawsuits—they just cannot proceed all together as one class action.
The benefits of an individual lawsuit include:
- More control: With a class-action lawsuit, decision-making abilities are reserved for the representative party or lead plaintiff and their lawyer. In an individual suit, you have more control and the ability to choose a lawyer who can best represent your needs.
- Faster resolution: Although any personal injury lawsuit can take up to a couple of years to resolve, an individual lawsuit is not subject to as many complicated legal procedures as a class action and can resolve more quickly.
There are many important issues that have yet to be litigated in the case against the YDC. Chief among them will surely be the statute of limitations and whether certain victims may be time-barred from pursuing justice.
Effective, Award-Winning Representation
At Shaheen & Gordon, we are actively reviewing and pursuing individual lawsuits on behalf of individual victims. If you or someone you know was abused during time spent at the NH YDC, contact us without delay.
Our group of ten personal injury attorneys is always ready to fight for justice. We understand that every individual is unique and so is every injury. We put our combined experience resolving all types of injury cases, including sexual abuse and civil rights violations, to work for you—to seek the result you deserve.