Friday, November 22, 2013

Jerry Sandusky's Victim Number 9

Victim number 9 has rejected the settlement offer from Penn State University and filed suit against the university. While the details of the individual settlements with the other victims have not been made public, the overall figures which have been made public show the average settlement is in excess of two million dollars. Since victim #9's abuse made up 6 of the 45 charges on which Sandusky was convicted, it is safe to say that his offer was in excess of the average.

Rejecting such a settlement offer is one of the big blunders plaintiffs often make. I have seen figures showing that as much as 60% of torts cases which go to trial result in verdicts for the defendants. In this case, there is no assurance that Penn State will be found liable. The alleged abuse took place at Sandusky's home, years after his employment with the university had been terminated. While the plaintiff clearly has damages, any effort to collect punitive damages will probably fail, and he will be stuck with at most his compensatory damages, after a long and arduous process to get the matter to trial and then to go through the expense and emotional stress and strain of a trial.

Victim number 9 is either getting some horrible advice, or he is rejecting his attorney's advice. He should accept the university's offer and get on with his healing process, rather than remaining bogged down in the past.

No comments: