Settlement Amounts of Sex Abuse Lawsuits

This page is about settlement amounts in sex abuse civil lawsuits. We look at jury awards and settlement compensation in other sex abuse lawsuits, including 2022-2024 verdicts and reported settlements.  Our sex abuse lawyers handle these cases in all 50 states.

If you are a victim of sexual assault or abuse, call us today at 800-553-8082 or contact us confidentially online.   Our sex abuse lawyers can help you get the compensation and justice you deserve for what you have been through.

Sex Abuse Lawsuit News and Updates

Before we get into the details of sex abuse settlements, let’s start with some of the latest news that impacts victims:

July 10, 2024: As societal awareness continues to rise about various forms of sexual abuse and assault, attention has expanded from issues within clergy and schools to sexual abuse in detention centers and, as in this case below, the police.  You see more police sex abuse lawsuits because more women are coming forward.

In a new case filed in New Mexico, a woman is suing the New Mexico Department of Public Safety, the New Mexico State Police, and a police office who was arrested for raping her. He picked her up which she was drunk, told her she need to take a shower. He took her to his parents’ house, let her take a shower and then came in a raped her.

June 27, 2024: A New York lawyer has filed a lawsuit in federal court in Pennsylvania against American Airlines and a doctor who was a passenger on her flight, alleging negligence and sexual assault.

The complaint details a series of incidents highlighting the airline’s alleged indifference to sexual assault on its aircraft, including past incidents where passengers were assaulted and the assailants were not detained.

Specifically, the plaintiff accuses this pediatric doctor of sexually assaulting her while she was sedated on medication during the flight. The lawsuit charges American Airlines with failing to prevent the assault despite previous similar incidents, seeking damages for the physical and emotional injuries she sustained.

It is surprising this case has not garnered more media attention. American Airlines has faced similar lawsuits in the past where allegations of negligence and failure to protect passengers from sexual assault or other harms were brought against them. These lawsuits often involve claims that the airline did not adequately respond to incidents or that it failed to implement sufficient preventive measures to safeguard passengers. Bigger picture… at some point, we have to question whether serving alcohol on airplanes is a good idea.

June 26, 2024: Fordham University in New York is now facing a growing number of sexual abuse lawsuit by victims who claim that they were sexually abused by Jesuit clergy associated with the university and the Fordham Preparatory School. The alleged abusers include Peter Conroy, a former theology teacher at the university, and Eugene O’Brien, who taught at the prep school and the university for several decades.

June 23, 2024: The U.S. Twirling Association (USTA) and a coach must pay nearly $4.2 million to a baton twirler who was sexually assaulted as a minor during a sponsored international trip, according to a New York federal jury.

The jury found the USTA negligent in selecting a chaperone for the trip. The organization and the coach are required to pay nearly $3.7 million and $504,000, respectively, to the twirler and her parents.

The suit, filed in September 2022, claimed the USTA failed to provide promised security and exaggerated the coach’s experience. During the trip to Lima, Peru, in 2019, the president of the Lions Club, who invited the twirlers, assaulted the victim after she was apparently drugged. The suit detailed inadequate supervision and unsafe conditions, including visits to nightclubs and private parties.

June 6, 2024: The deadline for victims of sexual abuse to file claims against the Archdiocese of Baltimore in its chapter 11 bankruptcy expired last week. The Archdiocese announced that more than 700 victim claims were ultimately filed and it estimates the potential liability of these claims could be as much as $1 billion.

May 28, 2024:  Nearly two years after 40% of existing cameras at the Women’s Community Correctional Center in Hawaii were reported as non-functional, the state prison system is installing new video cameras.

What led to this newfound interest in operator camera?  These upgrades are a response to a federal court lawsuit that led to a $2 million settlement with current and former inmates who alleged sexual assaults by staff, particularly in control booths. The new cameras will cover ‘blind spots’ and monitor entries and exits of control booths.

The lawsuit highlighted extensive sexual misconduct at the facility, with staff offering inmates snacks, methamphetamine, and privileges in exchange for coerced sexual acts. Two former staff members were convicted and sentenced to probation for their roles in the assaults.

Camera do not solve everything. But they help. This underscores the good that sexual abuse settlements have on protecting women and children from abuse in the future.

May 24, 2024: An emergency medicine doctor in Montana, Dr. Tyler Hurst, recently pled guilty to several counts of criminal sexual assault of patients. Dr. Hurst has admitted to sexually abusing a number of female patients while they were patients under his care at a local hospital in Missoula. Patients who were sexually abused by Dr. Hurst may be able to  file civil lawsuits and get compensation. Our firm is currently investigation these cases.

May 21, 2024: A Camden, New Jersey jury has awarded $1.6 million in damages to a woman, known as Jane Doe, who alleged that she was sexually abused by a teacher thirty years ago. Jane Doe asserted that the abuse began during her time as a student and persisted for years. The jury determined that the Camden City School District was 60% responsible for the abuse, while the teacher, now a local minister, was 40% responsible. So the verdict is cut by 40%. But there could be more coming – the punitive damage phase next and that could bring a larger award.

May 20, 2024: A new lawsuit was recently filed against a school district in Oklahoma. The suit alleges that a teacher sexually harassed and abused a pair of 4th grade students. The abuse was specifically reported to the school principal but the lawsuit asserts that nothing was done in response, and the students were abused again.

May 18, 2024: The University of North Carolina School of the Arts has settled a lawsuit with 65 alumni who claimed decades of sexual and emotional abuse by teachers and administrators. The settlement awards $12.5 million over four years, with $10 million from the University of North Carolina System and $2.5 million from UNCSA itself. The three-year-old lawsuit described abuse dating back to the 1960s.

The case leveraged a North Carolina law allowing child sexual abuse victims to sue despite expired statutes of limitations. The school, known for its rigorous training in the arts and its notable alumni, including Oscar-winning actress Mary-Louise Parker, faced allegations of rape, groping, and inappropriate touching.

As you see in many of these cases, there is some buyer’s remorse from victims who feel the settlement was inadequate, given the severity of the abuses.

May 15, 2024: In a federal lawsuit filed yesterday in Minnesota, a woman alleges that an employee of Inmate Services Corporation (ISC), committed sexual assault and rape while transporting her under a contract with Ramsey County. The complaint details that Hankins, acting under the authority granted by Ramsey County, sexually assaulted her during a prisoner transport from Washington State to Ramsey County for a DUI warrant.

The sexual assault lawsuit accuses Ramsey County and ISC of failing to prevent such incidents despite previous similar occurrences within ISC and other transport companies, arguing that this demonstrates a policy of deliberate indifference to the constitutional violations of detainees. This awfulness had gone on for many years, but in 2024, more women are standing up and saying enough.

The lawsuit outlines a disturbing pattern of abuse within the private prisoner transport industry, where companies like ISC are accused of routinely violating detainees’ constitutional rights, including physical and sexual abuse. It claims that these companies operate with minimal oversight, prioritizing profit over safety and rights, leading to severe misconduct, including sexual assault by transport employees.

May 10, 2024: A Texas appeals court has determined that Kinetic Content, LLC, the production company for Netflix’s “Love is Blind,” is no longer subject to civil assault claims in Texas from contestant Tran Dang, who alleges she was sexually assaulted by fellow contestant Thomas Smith during the show’s filming in Mexico. The court ruled that the assault claims do not fall under Texas jurisdiction as the events occurred outside the state.

However, the company must still defend against claims of false imprisonment and negligence related to incidents during filming in Houston, which was the primary location for the majority of the show’s fifth season.

Tran Dang accused Kinetic of minimizing the assault and failing to intervene despite having continuous video surveillance that likely captured the event.  It that is true, that is pretty awful.  Additionally, Dang claimed she was isolated in a Houston hotel without access to personal communication devices or identification—a scenario Kinetic tried to dismiss by attributing responsibility to another entity involved in production, Delirium.

The court rejected Kinetic’s argument that it could not be sued in Texas, noting that Dang signed a participation agreement and Kinetic’s employee handbook in Texas (which is interesting itself).  These developments follow a prior ruling that rejected an effort to arbitrate Dang’s claims. Why? Federal law thankfully exempts sexual assault claims from arbitration agreements.

May 9, 2024: The U.S. Tennis Association (USTA) has been ordered to pay $9 million in damages to professional tennis player Kylie McKenzie after a Florida federal jury found the organization liable for failing to protect her from sexual abuse by her coach, Anibal Aranda, at a Florida training center.

The verdict, which concluded after a weeklong trial, includes $3 million in compensatory damages and $6 million in punitive damages. The jury heard evidence that McKenzie was left unsupervised, in violation of USTA’s own policies, during her training sessions when the abuse occurred. McKenzie, who trained under USTA’s program from ages 12 to 19, accused Aranda of making unwanted advances and inappropriately touching her starting in October 2018, with the abuse escalating to more severe misconduct by November 2018.

April 29, 2024: Last week, the Diocese of Camden, New Jersey, was granted approval by a bankruptcy court for its $87 million settlement plan to address hundreds of sex abuse claims. There is also a plan in the works to deal with future claims that have not yet been brought.

This is a big development that marks a new era in this litigation.  Judge Jerrold Poslusny’s approval makes Camden the first Catholic diocese to settle a series of lawsuits triggered by new statute of limitations laws that expand or eliminate the deadline to bring a sex abuse lawsuit. The path to settlement against bankrupt dioceses is a template to be followed elsewhere.

These claims have been delayed due to ongoing disputes with insurance companies who are desperate to avoid coverage now only in New Jersey but everywhere.  But Judge Poslusny dismissed their appeal, finding that the insurers did not demonstrate they would suffer significant harm if the plan proceeded.

April 25, 2024: Tennessee’s sex abuse statute of limitation has gone from horrendous to bad.  Legislators have passed a bill extending the statute of limitations for filing lawsuits related to rape, sexual assault, and sexual battery from one year to three years.  Three years is still ridiculous.  But this is some progress.

This change comes in response to significant delays in rape kit testing at Tennessee crime labs. The Nashville Sexual Assault Center has highlighted instances where survivors were unable to pursue civil action because their rape kits remained untested, and the statute of limitations lapsed.

April 19, 2024: Congresswoman Deborah Ross has introduced the bipartisan “Closing Bankruptcy Loopholes for Child Predators Act” to reform how bankruptcy laws affect survivors of child sex abuse. Working alongside Republican Congresswoman Claudia Tenney of New York and Marci Hamilton, CEO of Child USA, the legislation aims to prevent organizations accused of child sex abuse from exploiting bankruptcy protections to halt discovery and silence survivors.

This legislative move comes in response to entities like the Boy Scouts of America and USA Gymnastics using bankruptcy filings strategically amidst numerous lawsuits triggered by extended statutes of limitations for child sex abuse. The bill proposes that during bankruptcy proceedings, discovery can continue, and victims can submit impact statements.

Additionally, it mandates forensic accounting reviews of the debtors’ estate to ensure victims receive appropriate remedies. Doug Kennedy, a victim, highlighted the bill’s importance, noting that the current bankruptcy process has been manipulated to protect not just the organizations but also individual abusers like his, who continued to work with children for decades.

April 8, 2024: A new sex abuse lawsuit for $9 million has been filed by a nine-year-old girl and her guardian against an Oregon nonprofit, Portland Public Schools, and Multnomah County, accusing them of neglect in preventing the girl from being raped by male peers at school. She was only in third grade.

The legal claim in this awful case details several instances of unwanted physical contact during school hours, including an incident in March 2022 where the girl defended herself against a boy who forcibly kissed her, resulting in both students being suspended. In April 2022, the situation escalated when two boys sexually assaulted her in a school bathroom, an act reported to the school staff by a parent of one of the assailants.

The sexual assault suit denounces the school and program’s delayed response in involving law enforcement and their ridiculous decision to conduct an internal probe without immediate notification to the girl’s parents or the authorities. Following minimal disciplinary action against the perpetrators, the girl’s father transferred her and her brother to a different school, leading to nearly a month of missed education.

The lawsuit criticizes Portland Public Schools for not recognizing the girl’s susceptibility to further assaults and for inadequate training on sexual boundaries and reporting procedures. It accuses the school system of discouraging self-defense against unwanted advances and faults both the school and the Latino Network, along with Multnomah County, for insufficient vigilance and training to prevent and respond to grooming and abuse in the after-school program.

April 5, 2024: Chubb continues to try to get out of paying out on sex abuse and assault lawsuits. Chubb’s legal team will not give up the fight to reverse of a lower court’s ruling that obligated the insurance company to provide coverage to the Archdiocese of New York for numerous child sexual abuse claims.

A New York County trial court judge had dismissed Chubb’s lawsuit that sought exemption from indemnifying the archdiocese for about 1,500 abuse cases. Chubb’s representation contended that the lawsuit against the archdiocese aimed to clarify the church’s prior knowledge or anticipation of abuse claims, information crucial for Chubb to ascertain its indemnification obligations. This legal battle traces back to 2019 when the Archdiocese of New York, expecting claims following the enactment of the New York Child Victims Act, sued over 30 insurers, including Chubb, for liability coverage.

Chubb argues it is the church’s duty to demonstrate that the claims stem from negligence rather than from a foreseen or intentional act, arguing that insufficient information has been provided by the archdiocese for such evaluation. But the reality is the claims against the churches in sex abuse lawsuits are not intentional torts.  The churches did not intentionally abuse children.  The lawsuits allege that the churches negligently failed to protect children and other victims.

April 3, 2024: Advocates for survivors of childhood sexual abuse plan to challenge a recent Louisiana Supreme Court decision that overturned a 2021 law. This law provided survivors a renewed opportunity to seek civil damages for abuses they suffered as children.

Unlike in 24 states where similar laws were upheld, Louisiana’s court, in a narrow 4-3 decision, unfortunately, invalidated the legislation. The court’s ruling, which stemmed from a lawsuit involving allegations of abuse by a priest in the 1970s, cited constitutional due process conflicts.

Advocates are looking at a host of options, including an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court and potentially amending the state constitution to protect survivors’ rights to file lawsuits. The decision has re-traumatized many survivors, prompting a strong response from advocacy groups determined to fight for justice and accountability.

April 2, 2024: An Ohio federal judge denied Red Roof Inns Inc.’s attempt to dismiss nine lawsuits alleging the hotel chain’s involvement in sex trafficking. Plaintiff C.B., along with other anonymous victims, accuses Red Roof Inns of knowingly profiting from and participating in sex trafficking operations in Connecticut, Florida, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Tennessee, Texas, Washington from 2011 to 2019.

The allegations state that Red Roof Inns failed to implement policies against trafficking despite apparent red flags, such as frequent room rentals for trafficking purposes and visible signs of abuse on the victims. The judge found the victims’ claims sufficient under the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act, noting the detailed allegations that the hotel chain had at least constructive knowledge of the trafficking based on the circumstances presented.

April 1, 2024:  The Diocese of Manchester in New Hampshire has agreed to a settlement payout in a sex abuse claim dating back to the 1970s involving a former priest. The victim was sexually abused at the age of 15 or 16 by Rev. Alfred L. Jannetta during his assignment at St. Paul’s Church in Franklin between 1973 and 1974. Jannetta, who died in 2005, was well-known by church officials.  The diocese had already paid millions in sex abuse lawsuits against him.

The allegations here are tragic.  Jannetta gave the child drugs and alcohol before sexually abusing him. How much settlement compensation did the victim receive for his claim?  You would expect millions. But his sex abuse lawyer called the settlement in the “low six figures.”

Why? The statute of limitations had passed. So because the state has an outdated statute of limitations. So there was no real path to compensation outside of a settlement. The Church deserves some credit here for stepping up and making a compensation payout when it did not have to do so. But the path here is for the state to join other states in 2024 and change its statute of limitations in sex abuse lawsuits to allow claims just like this.

March 26, 2024: Victims have filed a lawsuit against the Johnson City Police Department (JCPD) in Tennessee, alleging systemic failures and discrimination in the handling of sexual assault reports. Central to the lawsuit is the claim that the JCPD systematically refused to investigate or sometimes actively suppressed over 250 instances of reported sexual assaults due to sex discrimination. This legal action emerges amidst serious allegations against Sean Williams, accused of sexually assaulting more than four dozen women.

Williams, who resided in downtown Johnson City, is implicated in a series of grave offenses, with evidence suggesting he raped or sexually assaulted numerous women. Despite several complaints lodged between 2019 and mid-2021, allegations indicate the JCPD did not pursue charges against Williams. It was not until his arrest in April 2023 in Cullowhee, N.C., that Williams faced legal consequences, including charges of child rape and production of child pornography, with additional charges related to adult assaults pending based on photographic and video evidence.

The lawsuit represents a broad group of victims, categorized into several classes: those alleging sexual abuse, drugging, or trafficking by Williams or associated individuals; a subclass for those assaulted by Williams after the initial report of his alleged violence; and a class for all individuals reporting sexual abuse or trafficking to the JCPD from the beginning of 2018 to late April 2023.

March 22, 2024: In a new lawsuit, a woman, now 20, sues a wilderness therapy program operated by Trails Carolina, LLC and managed by Wilderness Training & Consulting, LLC in federal court, alleging she was sexually abuses due to the negligence and wrongful actions of the program and its employees.

Her story is beyond awful. At age 12, she was taken to North Carolina and sexually abused by a female counselor during her first week there. She reported the abuse. The counselor was not removed.  Instead, all of the kids were punished.  Another child reported sexual abuse. Nothing was done. The kids are all liars was their response. The counselor then raped her and forced her to perform oral sex. There is more. But that is enough.

Her sex abuse lawsuit claims Trails Carolina failed to safeguard its participants, leading to environments where the plaintiff was exposed to sexual assault and neglect. It alleges the program’s significant failures in reporting abuse incidents as mandated by state law, providing adequate care, food, and shelter, and misleadingly representing its services and the qualifications of its staff.  She is asking for compensatory and punitive damages, and if her allegations hold up, she should get plenty of both.

March 13, 2024: Our lawyers posted a video today explaining how sex abuse settlement amounts are calculated.

March 5, 2024: Maryland has a hearing in Prince George’s County on the constitutionality of its new sex abuse statute of limitations.  The Maryland Supreme Court will likely have the final say.

March 4, 2024:  A new article in Trauma Violence Abuse attempts to identify and synthesize existing literature on factors enabling child sexual abuse in sports.

The study mapped enabling factors across different levels of the sporting system hierarchy. Results highlighted significant gaps in understanding higher-level enabling factors contributing to CSA in sports and emphasized the importance of addressing organizational culture, tolerance, and governance.

Reading the study, you hope to learn about the systemic factors and perpetrator types to look out for and how to cure the culture of silence in sports that has led to horrible atrocities. But the article says that research has not been done (and should be done).

March 1, 2024: Survivors of sexual abuse by clergy within the Roman Catholic Church on Long Island are currently in the process of voting on a proposed $200 million settlement offered by the church. Sex abuse lawyers are generally opposed to the deal because the average settlement amount is low for the harm that was done to the victims.

Voting materials were distributed to survivors. The deadline to respond is March 22, 2024. If the proposal is rejected as many expect, approximately 600 sexual assault cases will head back to state court.

Victims in these situations are in a tough spot. They often know their claims is worth more than the settlement offer. The decision revolves around whether survivors prefer to resolve the matter now or hold out for potentially higher compensation later.

February 28, 2024: The Pennsylvania House passed legislation allowing victims to pursue legal action for child sexual abuse claims that were previously barred due to statutes of limitations.

This development includes a constitutional amendment and a separate bill, both aimed at providing a legal pathway for victims.  The proposed legislation would enable all victims to sue regardless of previous time constraints. However, the fate of these bills in the Senate remains unclear, with concerns about legal challenges and the potential financial impact on public institutions.

February 27, 2024: In Colorado, a proposed state constitutional amendment designed to enable survivors of childhood sexual assault to sue for older claims has encountered unexpected opposition and now there are legitimate fears it will not pass the Senates.

The amendment would offer survivors a chance to seek justice against both the perpetrators and the institutions that failed to prevent the abuse. This initiative follows a state court’s decision that declared a 2021 law unconstitutional for violating retrospective legislation provisions.

The backdrop here is that a 2021 law, which had bipartisan support, temporarily allowed survivors to file lawsuits for abuses dating back to 1960, irrespective of the statute of limitations. The law was found unconstitutional by the Colorado Supreme Court.

To address the court’s ruling, legislators proposed amending the constitution to permit retrospective legislation concerning child predators, requiring approval from 55% of Colorado voters. But to to get to that point, they need two-thirds support in each legislative chamber.  Many people who supported the bill in 2021 are flipping now.  Why the change of heart?  Well, how often does money from lobbyist change support with bills like this?  That is always the best guess.

February 23, 2024: Former NFL player Shareece Wright has come forward as one of the 12 individuals alleging sexual assault by a high school athletic trainer during their time as minors at a high school in Southern California. Wright hopes his disclosure to ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” will prevent future incidents by breaking the silence on such matters.

Wright, alongside five other ex-Colton High School football players, initially filed a lawsuit against the Colton Joint Unified School District and the athletic trainer, Tiffany Strauss-Gordon, in September 2022, a number which has now doubled. Strauss-Gordon, who has been on suspension since 2022 and faces no criminal charges, is the daughter of the late Harold Strauss, a celebrated Colton football coach.

The lawsuit reveals Wright’s encounter with Strauss, then known as Strauss-Gordon, starting at age 15. He describes a pattern of grooming that escalated to inappropriate touching and sexual encounters within school premises. Wright’s and other plaintiffs’ allegations suggest a systemic failure to address such abuse, compounded by a culture of silence and complicity.

Despite Strauss-Gordon’s denial of the accusations and her lawyer’s caution against assuming guilt from allegations, the lack of criminal charges due to insufficient evidence has not deterred the pursuit of justice through the civil lawsuit. The FBI and Department of Justice’s involvement, although unconfirmed, indicates the seriousness of the allegations and concerns over statutory limitations.

The district’s response, placing Strauss-Gordon on leave upon the lawsuit’s filing and cooperating with police investigations, contrasts with past actions where allegations were reportedly known but minimally acted upon. This is such a typical pattern right?  This historical inaction, including a brief suspension in 2011 with no detailed follow-up, highlights potential systemic issues in handling such allegations that we see too commonly is sex abuse lawsuits like this.

February 21, 2024:  Jane Doe filed a lawsuit in federal court in California against various hotel proprietors and operators, implicating them in her experience of sex trafficking at their establishments. The lawsuit seeks damages for the exploitation she endured, starting in 2013, at hotels under the management of the defendants.

Jane Doe alleges that her traffickers exploited her within hotels that are part of the Wyndham brand, including the Ramada in Anaheim and the Super8 in Escondido, California, throughout 2014. The complaint brings to light the financial gains the defendants allegedly made from providing a safe haven for traffickers to operate with impunity, despite clear indicators of illegal activities that should have been evident to properly trained hotel staff. These “red flags” of trafficking, as outlined in the complaint, include signs of physical abuse, restraint, and control over victims, all of which were ostensibly ignored by the hotel personnel.

Her sex trafficking lawsuit extends its critique to the broader hotel industry, emphasizing its unintentional but culpable role in the sex trafficking epidemic. It underscores the failure of the defendants to adhere to recommended practices for identifying and combating trafficking, despite widespread awareness and educational efforts by government and nonprofit organizations aimed at mitigating this issue within the hospitality sector.

Through this lawsuit, Jane Doe seeks to hold the defendants accountable for their substantial role in enabling sex trafficking and for their failure to protect victims, advocating for justice and reparation for the harm she and potentially others have suffered under their watch.

February 15, 2024: On Tuesday, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Lansing argued before the Michigan Supreme Court that a 2018 statute extending the limitations period for sexual abuse claims does not retroactively apply. It is challenging the notion that entities could be required to defend against claims dating back decades, a task they absurdly describe as “nearly impossible.”

The diocese contends that the legislature did not design the extended statute of limitations for retroactive application, specifically noting an exception for victims of Larry Nassar does not extend to other cases, such as Brian McLain’s negligence lawsuit that alleges abuse by a priest in 1999.

The diocese emphasized that the 2018 legislative changes, spurred by the Nassar scandal, aimed to extend the timeframe for future victimization claims, not to apply retrospectively, except for a specified window for Nassar’s victims. This stance comes as the court reviews McLain’s appeal against a Michigan Court of Appeals ruling that deemed the legislative amendments non-retroactive. McLain, who filed a lawsuit in April 2021 against the Diocese of Lansing and the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Baltimore, argues his case falls within the three-year window for bringing claims as an adult based on recent connections made between the abuse and his mental health issues.

February 14, 2024: A federal antitrust class action lawsuit filed in New York today alleges that the National Hockey League, along with three independent yet affiliated junior leagues, has been systematically exploiting teenage players. The lawsuit accuses them of subjecting these young athletes to a culture of “economic, physical, psychological, and sexual” abuse as part of their developmental process.

February 13, 2024: Two women, coerced into prostitution as teenagers at a local motel, have been awarded a combined total of $24.5 million in damages. An arbitrator found the motel’s owner, Ramara Inc., responsible for the human trafficking operations that occurred on its property.

This is a huge win for all of us who want t0 hold accountable those who facilitate or turn a blind eye to exploitation.

February 11, 2024: Attorneys for a subset of sex-abuse claimants against the Boy Scouts of America have requested the Supreme Court to halt disbursements from a $2.4 billion compensation fund, part of the organization’s bankruptcy settlement. These lawyers, representing a small portion of the 82,000 claimants, argue that the Boy Scouts’ settlement should be put on hold while the Supreme Court deliberates a similar issue in Purdue Pharma’s bankruptcy plan. This issue revolves around the capacity of bankruptcy courts to nullify claims against non-bankrupt third parties without unanimous claimant approval, a key aspect of both the Purdue and Boy Scouts plans.  This Boy Scout settlment has been mostly a fiasco.  Average per person Boy Scout settlements range from $3,500 for the “quick, get your money now” option all the way to $2.7 million.

January 25, 2024: Former Arizona quarterback Jayden de Laura, who had recently settled a civil lawsuit stemming from a 2018 sexual assault case, was signed by Texas State to play football. The lawsuit, connected to a 2018 criminal juvenile case, accused de Laura and his high school teammate Kamo’i Latu of sexually assaulting a minor at their high school in Honolulu. Both pleaded guilty to second-degree sexual assault in juvenile court.

The civil lawsuit, which lasted over three years, alleged assault, battery, false imprisonment, and emotional distress. The terms of the settlement, finalized in late 2023, were kept confidential.

This is not the only run-in he has had with the law.  In February 2021, while serving as the quarterback for a third university, Washington State, de Laura was arrested on suspicion of DUI. This occurred after he was observed driving on the wrong side of the road and running a stop sign near the Washington State University campus. Despite refusing a Breathalyzer test and failing a sobriety test, de Laura was ultimately found not guilty.

January 19, 2024: Varsity Brands LLC, a leading athletic apparel company, is reportedly close to settling a lawsuit in Florida where it was accused of contributing to the sexual abuse of underage cheerleaders.

A tentative settlement has been reached, which, pending court approval, would dismiss the claims against Varsity Brands and its founder, Jeff Webb. The lawsuit focuses on allegations against cheerleading coach Erick Kristianson, who faces criminal charges for sexually abusing athletes.

Varsity Brands, implicated for supporting a system that enabled abuse in competitive cheerleading, recently settled similar cases in North Carolina and Georgia but still faces other ongoing lawsuits.

January 17, 2024:   Human trafficking attorneys have filed a motion with the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation to centralize various lawsuits into multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the Southern District of Ohio.

This is “sort of” a class action lawsuit where all cases would be housed for pretrial purposes (and hopefully settlement) under the same judge. This request follows a directive from Chief U.S. District Judge Algenon Marbley in Columbus, Ohio, during a December hearing, where he advised the lawyers to seek consolidation.

The judge is currently overseeing 29 of these lawsuits and has expressed willingness to lead the MDL if formed.  The lawsuits cite the federal Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act, which permits human trafficking victims to sue those who knowingly benefit from their exploitation. That would be the core of what this class action would be about.

The lawsuits cite the federal Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act, which permits human trafficking victims to sue those who knowingly benefit from their exploitation.

Four years ago, the JPML panel rejected a bid by human trafficking attorneys to consolidate lawsuits. But there is just more awareness of sexual assault in 2024 than there was even in 2020. So the time for a class action could be now.

Who are the defendants?  Major hotel chains such as Red Roof, Red Roof, and Best Western International were named in the lawsuits.

December 23, 2023: Pornhub admitted to hosting non-consensual content and agreed to a legal settlement with federal prosecutors. The parent company of the website will pay a fine of $1.8 million and compensate the victims involved in sex trafficking.

Pornhub was not directly accused of violating federal sex trafficking laws. Still, the company streamed content from a production company that included non-consensual videos despite being aware of the issue and receiving takedown requests.

December 22, 2023: The Fifth Circuit Court has unfortunately decided not to rehear a case alleging that Snapchat facilitated the sexual abuse of a minor by a predator. John Doe was sexually abused by his high school teacher when he was 15. He sued Snap, the owner of Snapchat.  The teacher had used Snapchat to send him sexually explicit material. Doe made two arguments.  First, Snapchat acted as a distributor rather than a publisher. The company was deficient in its age-verification systems, failing to protect minors like himself.

The trial court and a circuit panel ruled that Snap was immune under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which shields internet providers from liability for third-party content on their platforms. However, U.S. Circuit Judge Jennifer Walker Elrod penned a dissent, criticizing the Fifth Circuit’s interpretation of Section 230 as textual and overly broad. While Section 230 protects companies from being treated as publishers or speakers of third-party content, it does not preclude distributor liability or claims related to design defects. Unfortunately, her view did not carry the day. But the Supreme Court may be interested in reviewing this case given the disagreements about how to apply Section 230.

December 11, 2023: Two former students are suing Sarah Lawrence College, claiming the institution failed to protect them from a manipulative individual who established cult-like relationships with them. This person, who had just been released from prison, moved into his daughter’s dormitory at Sarah Lawrence and began to exploit her friends and roommates. He was convicted of charges including racketeering, forced labor, and sex trafficking, having coerced some into prostitution and financial exploitation over several years. The plaintiffs, including the sister of one of the students, argue that the college is partly responsible for their ordeal, as it did not intervene despite the man’s obvious and prolonged presence on campus. The lawsuit details how the individual, who lived in the dorm for almost an academic year, was reported to the college for abusive behavior, but no action was taken. The plaintiffs seek damages for their suffering, healthcare costs, and lost wages.

December 7, 2023:  The judge overseeing the Boy Scouts of America’s bankruptcy case recently rejected a $21 million legal fee request from attorneys representing survivors of child sexual abuse. The attorneys, part of a group known as the Coalition of Abused Scouts for Justice, sought compensation for their fees and expenses from both the Boy Scouts and a trust fund set up to compensate abuse survivors. Judge Laurie Selber Silverstein denied this request, citing concerns that the payment would effectively reduce the compensation available to the abuse claimants.

Before anyone cries a river for these sex abuse lawyers, the law firms involved in the case are already set to receive about 40% of any payments from the $2.4 billion trust fund established for abuse survivors. Despite this, the coalition’s attorneys argued for additional fees, claiming they made an “extraordinary contribution” to developing the Boy Scouts’ reorganization plan.

November 22, 2023: Nearly three decades ago, at the Moreno Valley Unified School District in California, two former sixth-grade students were sexually abused by their teacher. Despite previous complaints of child molestation against the teacher, the school district continued to employ him. The victims, who are now in their late 30s, filed a school sex abuse lawsuit against the district, alleging negligence and a failure to protect them from the teacher’s abuse, which persisted into their sophomore year of high school. A California state jury awarded the victims $135 million in damages. The verdict allocated 90% of the fault to the Moreno Valley Unified School District and 10% to the teacher. The two victims received $55 million and $80 million as compensation for the mental and emotional distress they suffered.

November 21, 2023: In a lawsuit against a St. Peters massage spa and its owner, it was alleged that a massage therapist employed at the spa sexually assaulted six women over nine months. Despite previous allegations of assault against the therapist at another location, the spa continued to employ him and failed to act on subsequent reports of misconduct from its own customers. The St. Charles County jury found the spa and its owner liable, awarding the plaintiffs nearly $250 million in damages. The awards, ranging from $35.2 million to $47 million per plaintiff, included compensatory and punitive damages, significantly surpassing the plaintiffs’ last pretrial demand of $4 million and the defense’s final pretrial offer of $1 million. The accused therapist, who missed several court hearings in fall 2021 after posting bail, remains at large.

November 18, 2023: Plaintiffs who claim that Pornhub published sexually explicit videos of them as minors have requested class certification in a lawsuit against MindGeek, the owner of Pornhub. They argue that there is shared evidence indicating MindGeek intentionally designed its website to encourage the posting of child sex abuse material (CSAM). The plaintiffs’ legal team highlighted that MindGeek lacked age verification processes for performers and that its audit revealed over 38,000 instances of content categorized as child sex abuse material. The motion pushes the idea that MindGeek’s website design promoted posting such material to increase web traffic and generate revenue. Additionally, they seek an injunction requiring MindGeek to verify the age of all performers in the content each time something is published on their sites. Unfortunately, this is a great idea, but there are many ways around it. Of course, MindGeek wants to push back on the age verification because that is bound to lead to fewer website users.  People watching porn online will not be excited about showing ID.

November 10, 2023: Columbia University has announced a $100 million fund to compensate victims of Robert Hadden, a former obstetrician-gynecologist at the university convicted of sexual abuse. The fund is part of a broader response that includes an external investigation into the failures that allowed the abuse to occur. The university’s President apologized for the institution’s failure to protect victims. In addition to the settlement fund, Columbia is setting up a patient safety center to review and improve its health programs and protocols. Hadden, who was sentenced to 20 years in prison following his conviction, has not practiced since 2012.

Over 6,500 of Hadden’s former patients will be informed about his conviction and provided information on available resources and their legal rights under the New York State Adult Survivors Act. This act permits survivors to file lawsuits even after the statute of limitations has expired.

November 3, 2023:  Last year,  Los Angeles County was sued in a sexual molestation lawsuit alleging that at least 12 victim were sexually assaulted as children while residing at MacLaren Hall.The lawsuit also contends that frequent incidents of sexual abuse and assault occurred at MacLaren Hall, perpetrated both by fellow residents and staff members, attributed to inadequate supervision.

Survivors who are plaintiffs in the case accuse MacLaren Hall employees of assaulting them, administering drugs to them, and coercing them into sexual acts between 1988 and 2001. Among these plaintiffs, one reported suffering abuse at the age of 5, while another alleges that they were physically assaulted by staff for reporting sexual abuse.

Our sexual abuse lawyers will be watching this MacLaren Hall litigation closely as it continues to progress.

October 28, 2023: A consortium of insurance companies has urged a bankruptcy judge in New Jersey to dismiss the latest Chapter 11 reorganization plan by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Camden and its official committee of tort claimant creditors.

The insurers – who make it sound like they think they are the real victim here – argue that the proposed plan exacerbates the errors that led to the rejection of the diocese’s initial plan in August. The insurance companies who will ultimately be paying settlements and verdicts filed a detailed objection, emphasizing that the plan fails to address the court’s directive to be more impartial and inclusive of insurers’ interests.

Their other beef is with the new trust administrator, Matthew Dundon, citing his close ties to the tort committee and plaintiffs’ attorneys, creating a conflict of interest.  They are concerned about his representation of individual plaintiffs’ attorneys and their or clients in aggregate litigations and bankruptcies, which is an integral part of his business for him to be impartial.

Sexual Abuse Settlements Amounts and Verdicts

Below are summaries of other major sexual abuse cases that resulted in publicly reported settlements. These cases give us a representative cross-section of the types of civil lawsuits and compensation payouts common in sexual abuse lawsuits.

The vast majority of sex abuse lawsuits settle before the case ever goes to a jury.  It is no coincidence that all these lawsuits settled before trial.

  • 2024, Oregon: $3,500,000 Settlement. The St. Helens School District in Oregon has settled a civil rights lawsuit for $3.5 million, marking the state’s largest sex abuse settlement involving a public school. The lawsuit accused the district of failing to address the predatory behavior of a high school teacher towards female students, which continued until his arrest for sexually abusing the plaintiff. The plaintiff’s claim highlighted the district’s “deliberate indifference” to the known risks posed by the teacher, despite being aware of his behavior for over a decade.  This sex abuse suit emphasized, as so many of these cases do, systemic failures at multiple levels within the school district, including a lack of accountability, inadequate record-keeping, and an absence of internal investigations to prevent future incidents. The teacher involved was sentenced to over four years in prison and is now required to register as a sex offender. The settlement, covered by the school insurer, comes after a federal judge allowed the lawsuit to proceed, underscoring the district’s responsibility to protect students from known dangers.
  • 2024, Pennsylvania: $24,500,000 Arbitration Award: Two women were forced into prostitution at the ages of 16 and 17 and were taken to the motel dozens of times. One of the women was told by one of her gun-toting captors that he would kill her family if she didn’t cooperate. She was drugged and given a daily quota of earning $2,000 to $3,000 from prostitution.  They eventually got free.  One of the women managed to escape her trafficker by calling the police. The other was rescued by the FBI in Northeast Philadelphia.  They were brave enough to tell their story and received the compensation they more than deserved.
  • 2023, West Virginia: $100,000,000 Settlement. Former students at a private boarding school alleged that they suffered various forms of abuse, including bodily injury, sexual misconduct, false imprisonment, malnutrition, and emotional distress during their time there. The alleged abuse included being confined in small, dark, and cold rooms for prolonged periods with minimal food and unsanitary conditions. There were also claims that the school did what we see in so many clergy abuse and other institutional abuse cases – it concealed evidence of this maltreatment. A significant settlement of around $100 million was reached to resolve many of these claims, though other cases remained pending.
  • 2023, Missouri: $1,000,000 Settlement. At a daycare facility, a 13-year-old autistic boy was molested by another student in a bathroom due to inadequate supervision by the staff. The assailant later admitted to initiating the abuse and instructing the victim in sexual acts during an interview with state officials. Subsequently, the daycare settled the matter for $1 million with the victim’s family. The specific identities and the location of the facility where the molestation occured were undisclosed. These settlement agreements in child victims act lawsuits are incredibly rigid.
  • 2023, Nebraska: $116,000 Settlement. The plaintiff, a retail store employee, claimed that her supervisor on multiple occasions attempted to touch her buttocks, grazed her breast with his elbow, grabbed her breasts intentionally, and asked the plaintiff to engage in a sexual relationship several times. Eventually, the supervisor forcibly raped the plaintiff on the job under the threat of being fired.
  • 2023, New Jersey: $331,000 Verdict. The defendant, a municipal government, allegedly allowed one of their employees to use his positions with them as their firefighter, community figurehead, mentor, and/or counselor to allegedly sexually abuse the plaintiff many times, from approximately 1986 through 1990. The plaintiff allegedly was sexually abused by the employee, beginning when the plaintiff was approximately eight years old.
  • 2022, Missouri: $1.35 Million Verdict. A girl accused her classmate of sexual assault. She claimed he assaulted her in a school stairwell. The girl suffered emotional distress. Her family alleged that the school district failed to stop the classmate’s harassment and monitor the stairwell. The family received a $1,350,000 verdict.
  • 2022, New York: $16.3 Million Settlement. Virginia Giuffre accused Prince Andrew of sexually assaulting her when she was underage. She claimed Jeffrey Epstein coerced her into having sex with the Prince. Prince Andrew denied Giuffre’s allegations. He agreed to settle for $16.3 million.  This settlement amount is a bit of an outlier.
  • 2022, California: $2 Million Settlement. A woman accused her former Spanish teacher of sexually abusing and grooming her when she was 17 years old. She claimed he abused her between October 2018 and January 2019, when he was arrested. The woman alleged that the San Jose School District failed to prevent her teacher from sexually harassing, abusing, and molesting minors. The school district agreed to settle for $2 million.
  • 2022, Michigan: $490 Million Settlement. Over 1,000 individuals, including former college football players, accused former University of Michigan sports doctor Robert Anderson of sexual abuse and assault. They claimed Anderson sexually assaulted and abused them during routine examinations. The individuals allege that the university failed to protect them from Anderson. The University of Michigan agreed to settle these lawsuits for $490 million.
  • 2022, Texas: $875,000 Settlement. Fifteen women accused the City of Austin of mishandling their sexual assault cases. They allege that the justice system failed them. The women also claimed that city prosecutors failed to prosecute anyone in their cases. The City of Austin voted to approve an $875,000 settlement.
  • 2021, New Jersey: $4.5 Million Settlement. Several apartment tenants accused their landlord of sexual harassment. They claimed he harassed women and gay and bisexual men and provided housing benefits in exchange for sexual favors. The individuals alleged that their landlord’s actions violated the Fair Housing Act. This case settled for $4.5 million.
  • 2021, New York: $600,000 Settlement. Twenty former employees accused chef Mario Batali and his business partner of perpetuating a culture of sexual harassment in their three restaurants. They claimed male managers made lewd comments regarding female employees’ looks. The employees also claimed that Batali had made lewd comments himself and inappropriately touched a female employee. Batali and his business partner agreed to settle for $600,000.
  • 2021, New York: $71.5 Million Settlement. Seventy-nine women accused former Columbia University-affiliated gynecologist Robert Hadden of sexual assault. They hire a sex abuse lawyer and filed a lawsuit claiming he inappropriately touched them during examinations. Not atypically, many women claimed Hadden became more intrusive during subsequent exams. He faced additional lawsuits that accused him of molesting hundreds of women. New York-Presbyterian Hospital and Columbia University Irving Medical Center agreed to settle for $71.5 million.
  •  2021, California: $2.2 Million Settlement. Two former students of actor James Franco’s acting school accused him of sexual misconduct and fraud. They claimed he forced them to perform in sexually gratuitous scenes and denied them the use of nudity riders in a sex scenes class. Franco agreed to settle these lawsuits for $2.2 million.
  •  2021, California: $1.1 Billion Settlement. Over 700 women accused former USC gynecologist George Tyndall of sexual misconduct. They claimed he sexually abused them during the procedure. The women alleged that USC failed to protect them from Tyndall. The university agreed to settle for $1.1 billion.
  •  2009, New York: $500,000 Settlement. Virginia Giuffre accused billionaire Jeffrey Epstein of sexually trafficking her. Giuffre claimed Epstein hired her as a sexual servant when she was a teenager. The woman alleged that he flew her all over the world for sexual encounters with many men, including politicians, academics, businessmen, and royals. Epstein agreed to settle for $500,000.

How Sex Abuse Settlement Amounts Are Determined

The calculation of sexual abuse settlement amounts is a complex and sensitive process that takes into account a number of different factors. There is no one-size-fits-all answer to how these settlements are valued. Every sex abuse case our law firm has handled is special and unique. But, generally, there are key factors that may influence the valuation of a sexual abuse settlement:

  1. The severity of the abuse: The more severe the abuse, the higher the settlement amount is likely. This can include physical, emotional, and psychological harm. This is the single biggest driver of sex abuse settlement payouts because this is what juries care about most.
  2. The impact of the abuse on the victim: The settlement may consider how the abuse has affected the victim’s life and well-being, including any physical or emotional scars, lost earning potential, and medical expenses. As awful as it sounds to say it out loud, the more the victim was damaged by what happened, the higher the sexual abuse settlement amount, all things being equal.
  3. The length of time the abuse: If the abuse took place over a long period, the settlement amount is likely to be higher than if it took place over a shorter period.
  4. The victim’s age: Children and young people are often awarded higher settlements than adults, as they are more vulnerable and may have a longer life ahead of them to deal with the consequences of the abuse. This rule has stark exceptions, but younger victims have statistically higher settlement averages.
  5. The jurisdiction: Different states and countries may have different laws and regulations that govern sexual abuse settlements, which may considerably impact the final settlement amount.
  6. The ability of the abuser to pay: The settlement amount may also be influenced by the ability of the defendant to pay. If the defendant is a large corporation or wealthy individual, the settlement amount may be higher, as they have the financial resources to compensate the victim adequately. This is often the most critical factor if you do not have a deep-pocket defendant.  So the average childhood molestation settlement amounts often really hinge on whether there is a third party also responsible for abuse.  If the defendant is a family member with limited assets, that becomes a more difficult claim to get a reasonable settlement payout.
  7. The evidence:  The availability of evidence such as medical records, witness statements, and other documentation can also impact the settlement amount. The more substantial the evidence, particularly a criminal conviction, the more likely the victim will receive a higher settlement.

Are Sexual Assault Settlements Taxable?

Sexual assault settlement amounts are generally not considered taxable income for the victim. The tax treatment of such settlements is typically governed by the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) of the United States. Specifically, IRC Section 104(a)(2) states that “gross income does not include…the amount of any damages (other than punitive damages) received (whether by suit or agreement and whether as lump sums or as periodic payments) on account of personal physical injuries or physical sickness.”

Sexual assault settlement amounts fall are basically “personal physical injuries or sickness,” for our purposes and should not be taxable.  Punitive damages or a specific lost wage award can be exceptions.

Tax laws vary, and you want to get a legal opinion specific to this case. But sexual assault compensation payouts are generally not taxable.

Finding the Right Lawyer to Fight for You

Our lawyers understand the traumatic impact that childhood sexual abuse can have on a person’s life. Our law firm is dedicated to helping survivors of sexual abuse recover compensation for the physical and psychological harm that they have endured.

We are experienced and knowledgeable in handling cases of sexual abuse that have taken place in various institutions, including churches, summer camps, youth recreation programs, schools, religious organizations, and others. Our attorneys approach each case with sensitivity, discretion, and a commitment to securing the best outcome possible for our clients.

If you or a loved one is a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, we encourage you to reach out to us for a free, confidential, and no-risk case evaluation. During this evaluation, we will listen to your story, assess your case, and provide you with information about the next steps you can take to secure the compensation you deserve.

Our goal is to support you and your loved ones in this difficult time and help you find closure and healing. Contact us today online or call 800-553-8082 to learn more about how we may be able to help you.

More on Sex Abuse Lawsuits

Our sex abuse lawyers are reviewing these claims nationwide, but most of our cases come from these jurisdictions with more favorable laws:

Specific Jurisdictions

Arkansas Sex Abuse Claims New Jersey Sex Abuse Lawsuits
California Sexual Abuse Lawsuits New York Sex Abuse Lawsuits 
Colorado Sex Abuse Lawsuits North Carolina Sex Abuse Lawsuits
Connecticut Sexual Abuse Lawsuits Ohio Sex Abuse Lawsuits
Florida Sex Abuse Lawsuits Pennsylvania Sex Abuse Lawsuits
Georgia Sex Abuse Lawsuits Philadelphia Sex Abuse Lawsuits
Illinois Sexual Abuse Lawsuits  South Carolina Sex Abuse Lawsuits
Indiana Sex Abuse Lawsuits Texas Sex Abuse Lawsuit
Maine Sex Abuse Lawsuits Vermont Sex Abuse Lawsuits
Maryland Sex Abuse Lawyer Virginia Sex Abuse Lawsuits
Michigan Sex Abuse Lawsuits Washington DC Sex Abuse Lawsuits 
Mississippi Sex Abuse Lawsuits Washington Sex Abuse Lawsuits
Missouri Sex Abuse Lawsuits Wisconsin Sex Abuse Lawsuits
Nevada Sex Abuse Lawsuits

Specific Claims and Law

Missouri Reform School Sex Abuse Lawsuits Cheerleader Sex Abuse Class Action Lawsuit
Clergy Sex Abuse Lawsuits Against Churches Sex Abuse Lawsuits Against LDS Church
Pennsylvania Juvenile Detention Center Sex Abuse Lawsuits Vermont Clergy Sex Abuse Lawsuit
Dr. Anderson University of Michigan Sex Abuse Lawsuit Royal Rangers Sex Abuse Lawsuit Settlement
Cheltenham Youth Detention Center Sex Abuse Lawsuits Uber Sex Assault Lawsuits
Indiana Sex Abuse Lawsuits Against Dr. David Moore Statute of Limitations in Sex Abuse Cases
Cheerleader Sex Abuse Class Action Lawsuit 2nd Circuit Sex Abuse Opinion
Sex Abuse Lawsuits Against LDS Church Sex Abuse Compensation
Lord’s Ranch Sex Abuse Lawsuits  


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