Legal Proceedings

Ohio State condemns Strauss’ reprehensible conduct and has committed substantial resources to preventing and addressing sexual misconduct on campus. Ohio State is a fundamentally different university today than it was 25 years ago.

The Ohio State University offered survivors the opportunity to settle their suits for substantial amounts. Plaintiffs had the opportunity to settle through mediation, an individual settlement program, or separately negotiated group and individual settlements. The majority of the survivors settled their claims, and all male students who filed lawsuits have been offered the opportunity to settle. The remaining plaintiffs continue to pursue their legal claims.

A federal trial court dismissed the Title IX claims as untimely, ruling that the two-year statute of limitations had long ago expired on plaintiffs’ claims based on abuse occurring more than 20 to 40 years ago. Subsequently, a divided decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit allowed the claims to be litigated. The Sixth Circuit ruling also expanded the scope of Title IX beyond students and employees to cover members of the public who are, for example, accessing university libraries, attending campus tours or sporting events or participating in other campus activities.

Four judges of the Sixth Circuit disagreed with the majority’s decision or expressly invited the U.S. Supreme Court to review the case. Ohio State sought review of the ruling, and 23 schools from across the country and the 71-member Association of American Universities filed an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to review the case.

The university's petition asked the Supreme Court to uphold fundamental, well-established legal principles and the rule of law. The questions presented in the petition were purely legal issues with implications that extend far beyond Ohio State. The United States Supreme Court declined to review Ohio State’s case involving Title IX claims. The cases have been remanded back to the trial court for further legal proceedings.