BY: Lisa Esser-Weidenfeller | IN: Medical Malpractice, Personal Injury
Women who believe they were abused by gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar take note – the opportunity to file a lawsuit against Michigan State University may be ending soon.
The law provides certain time perimeters, known as the statute of limitations, during which lawsuits must be filed. Due to the nature of the sexual abuse claims against Dr. Nassar, the statute of limitations is due to possibly expire on March 10, 2017, meaning that lawsuits seeking damages from Michigan State University for his misconduct should be filed by that date.
Therefore, if you were a victim of Dr. Nassar, it is extremely important that you talk to an attorney immediately to preserve your claim.
Nassar worked as a team physician at MSU for nearly 20 years and with USA Gymnastics for approximate 30 years. Dozens of pending lawsuits allege that he sexually assaulted female minors and young women during medical procedures spanning from 1996 to 2016. Most of the assaults are said to have occurred at Nassar’s university clinic and in a backroom at Twistars USA Gymnastics Club.
Nassar was held in high regard at Michigan State and USA Gymnastics. Until now, many victims were afraid that no one would listen to their accusations, or worse, that they would be subjected to negative repercussions for coming forward.
USA Gymnastics has stated that officials first learned of concerns regarding Nassar in the summer of 2015, and which time they notified the FBI and suspended his assignments. MSU, however, continued to employ Nassar until 2016.
According to the lawsuits filed, MSU coaches and their respective staffs were informed of sexual assault allegations against Nassar as early as 1999, but failed to take any action. As a result, the abuses continued and the number of victims increased. In 2014, another report of a Nassar assault was reported to MSU, finally prompting the school to investigate. Unfortunately, that investigation by MSU’s Title IX Office and University Police cleared him of any wrongdoing and no action was taken to cease his activities. Interestingly, MSU vindicated Nassar, in part, based on the opinions of four medical experts with close ties to the trainer and the school.
The abuse continued until September 2016 when Nassar was finally terminated and arrested.
Only one of the more than 30 plaintiffs has been identified by her true name – the rest have chosen to use Jane Doe pseudonyms, a protection that victims should know exists so that they can come forward without fear of undue exposure and repercussions.
Finding the strength to speak up and step forward can be painfully difficult, but know that you are not alone and that help is available. We can guide you every step of the way and represent you in your legal claims against MSU and Larry Nassar. But time is running out, so please contact Lisa Esser-Weidenfeller today to discuss your case and the harm that’s been done to you.
Photo Credit: NBC News
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Lisa Esser-Weidenfeller focuses her practice on medical malpractice, automobile negligence, and general negligence litigation on behalf injured plaintiffs.