Ohio State announced today that it has come to a settlement in 12 lawsuits with 162 victims of former university doctor Richard Strauss. The settlement is worth $40.9 million, per the university.
This comes on the heels of a March announcement that saw settlements with nearly half of the individuals with claims against the university. That settlement agreement now includes everyone that filed a claim against Strauss, who worked at Ohio State from 1978 to 1998 and died in 2005.
“The university of decades ago failed these individuals – our students, alumni and members of the Buckeye community,” said President Michael V. Drake. “Nothing can undo the wrongs of the past, but we must do what we can today to work toward restorative justice.
“Our focus will always be on the survivors. We know it took great courage for them to come forward, and we are grateful.”
Per the statement, the amounts given to each individual will be determined later. The university will not have input on this deliberation.
“Amounts received by survivors will vary by individual as awarded by the special master. As part of the agreement, Ohio State will provide up to $500,000 to fund the costs of administering the fund. No taxpayer, tuition or restricted donor funds will be utilized.”
The lead negotiator for the plaintiffs’ firms, Rick Schulte, expressed support of the announcement, praising the quality of the settlement.
“Working with Ohio State, we established an independent confidential process to evaluate each claim individually. The process will account for wide variations in abuse and provide a pathway for survivor healing. One hundred percent of 162 survivors in this settlement decided against further litigation and agreed to participate. The participation rate speaks to the quality of this settlement!”
The university will also continue to cover the costs of professional counseling for anyone impacted by Strauss.
“Since February 2019, Ohio State has covered the cost of professionally certified counseling services and treatment for anyone affected by Strauss, whether counseling and treatment occurred in the past or is needed at any point in the future. To connect with these services, or if individuals are at all uncertain about how to proceed and have questions, please contact Praesidium at 888-961-9273 or visit https://website.praesidiuminc.com/wp/osu/.”