Lawyer: Chicago archdiocese has paid out $80M to law firm

September 17, 2019 - 11:08 am

CHICAGO (AP) — A prominent attorney for victims of sexual abuse by clergy says the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago has paid $80 million to clients represented by his law firm alone since 2000.

Jeff Anderson told reporters in Chicago Tuesday it's the first time he's publicly revealed a total sum of settlement payments to 160 survivors by nearly 50 abusers.

The figure doesn't include payments to survivors represented by other law firms. A message seeking comment from the archdiocese wasn't immediately returned.

The Minnesota-based lawyer says the payments averaged $500,000 per victim, with some running into the millions.

Anderson says the archdiocese fought litigation throughout the '90s but slowly developed a settlement process. He called the relationship with the archdiocese "arduous and inconsistent." But he said there's been "a sea change" in its approach in recent decades.