USA Gymnastics files plan to emerge from bankruptcy

Reuters

(Reuters) - USA Gymnastics said on Thursday it filed a plan to emerge from bankruptcy that offers the group of survivors who were sexually abused by former national team doctor Larry Nassar a $215 million settlement.

The women, as a group, may vote to accept the $215 million to settle all their claims or pursue their lawsuits and collect any judgements from insurance policies available to the sport's national governing body.

USA Gymnastics also said if the survivors vote to accept the settlement, the insurers for Twistars, a Michigan-based Gymnastics club where athletes said Nassar abused them, will also contribute an additional $2.125 million (1.6 million pounds) to the settlement amount.

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Whichever option the women accept will apply to all members of the survivor class.

The plan also includes benchmarks that obligate USA Gymnastics to continue to enhance athlete safety and provides for payments to other creditors of USA Gymnastics.

"While we do not yet have an agreement with the Committee representing the survivors, we still hope to reach an agreement," USA Gymnastics Chief Executive Li Li Leung said in a news release.

"USA Gymnastics filed its proposed plan to communicate to the survivor class the two options that are currently available based on the amount of money USA Gymnastics' insurers are willing to pay into a settlement fund."

According to Leung, who was hired last February to help USA Gymnastics navigate the aftermath of a devastating sex abuse scandal, the plan allows for ongoing negotiations among the parties and the governing body are hopeful discussions will lead to an agreement that is supported by all parties in the case.

Many gymnasts who suffered abuse at Nassar's hands have accused USA Gymnastics of failing to investigate earlier complaints about his misconduct.

The plan of reorganization was filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana.

USA Gymnastics filed for bankruptcy in December 2018, saying at the time it was staggering under the weight of lawsuits filed by hundreds of women who were sexually abused by Nassar.

Nassar was sentenced to up to 300 years in prison in 2018 after more than 300 women accused him of sexual abuse.


(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

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