University Makes Huge Payout to Settle Abuse-Related Lawsuits

University Makes Huge Payout to Settle Abuse-Related Lawsuits

( – In this day and age, it’s not unusual to see massive payouts in lawsuits. However, a recent settlement to conclude about 50 cases related to sexual abuse is turning more than a few heads.

On Monday, February 7, the University of California system agreed to pay $243 million to settle lawsuits brought by 203 women who alleged that former UCLA Health gynecologist James Heaps abused them. A group of attorneys representing some of the women announced the settlement agreement.

The plaintiffs’ attorneys told reporters the parties came to an agreement using a private mediator after presenting substantial evidence to the court. Each woman will reportedly receive about $1.2 million.

Dr. Heaps worked at UCLA for 35 years. University officials launched an investigation into the allegations in 2017. The following year, the school declined to renew his contract, and he retired. Then, in 2021, prosecutors filed 21 abuse charges against Heaps for offenses involving seven women for nine years ending with his 2018 retirement.

In July 2021, UCLA also agreed to pay $73 million to settle a class-action lawsuit that involved allegations made by more than 5,500 women.

UCLA issued a statement to media outlets shortly after the announcement of the settlement stating that Heaps’ alleged conduct was “reprehensible and contrary to the university’s values.” The university also said it hoped the agreement would help provide “healing and closure for the [women] involved” in the lawsuit.

What do you think? Is $1.2 million enough to compensate Dr. Heaps’ alleged victims for their pain and suffering?

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