Were You a Patient of Dr. James Heaps?
JJS Can Help Protect Your Legal Rights.
- 40 Years of Experience
- Over $3 Billion Won for Our Clients
- Thousands of Lives Changed
CASE UPDATE: In February 2022, JJS and co-counsel reached a $243.6 million settlement with UCLA. This settlement, on behalf of 203 plaintiffs (of which JJS represented 27), is part of a larger group of settlements totaling nearly $700 million recovered from UCLA for their part in the sexual abuse, assault, and harassment of patients by Dr. Heaps.
Female patients may have been sexually exploited by Dr. Heaps over the course of at least ten years. Some may have thought his conduct was inappropriate, but did not realize to what extent. If you were a patient and have concerns about his conduct please contact us for a free evaluation, with no obligation to move forward with a case. If you decide to move forward, California law permits victims of sexual assault or abuse to remain nameless, so your case could be filed as “Jane Doe.”
Dr. Heaps practiced at UCLA Health Center, Ronald Reagan UCLA Hospital, and UCLA Medical Group. On June 11, 2019, he was arrested and has been charged with sexual battery by fraud and one count of sexual exploitation with two patients by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. Additional patients have already come forward since this announcement.
IF YOU WERE A PATIENT OF DR. HEAPS, DON'T SUFFER IN SILENCE.
Get the Justice You Deserve Today from Two of the Nation's Leading Law Firms
Janet, Janet & Suggs (JJS), in collaboration with Arias Sanguinetti Wang & Torrijos (AWST), has been on the front lines of advising and representing thousands of women who were victimized by their physicians, including by Dr. George Tyndall at University of Southern California (USC). In March 2021, a record-breaking $842.4M settlement was reached with USC– the largest known settlement in a sexual abuse case in U.S. history, as well as the largest known personal injury settlement against a university.
What is the Alleged "Sexually Abusive Behavior" by Dr. Heaps?
According to information released by UCLA, the university terminated Dr. Heaps’s employment due to misconduct allegations relating to:
- Inappropriate and medically unnecessary touching and communications during gynecologic procedures.
- Substantiated violation of UCLA’s Sexual Violence and Sexual Harassment policy.
He was also reported to the Medical Board of California.
When did UCLA Learn About Dr. Heaps' Alleged Misconduct?
The first complaint came in 2008, according to the Associated Press, but UCLA authorities did not respond. Dr. Heaps was allowed to continue to examine female gynecological patients despite a history of similar complaints of alleged misconduct and abuse. UCLA began investigating Heaps in December 2017 following:
1. a California Medical Board investigation in 2014 (at or near the time that UCLA apparently acquired Dr. Heaps’ practice), based on information involved allegations of sexual misconduct during a patient examination; and
2. at least one claim that he sexually harassed and molested a UCLA student that was posted online in a public forum in early 2015.
When was Dr. Heaps Employed by UCLA?
2014 to 2018
OBGYN at UCLA Health
1990 to January 31, 2014
Private practice (UCLA patients were referred to him); Privileges at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center
1989 to 2018
UCLA Medical School faculty
1989 to June 2010
Consulting physician for UCLA Student Health
1983 to 1989
Internship and residency in obstetrics and gynecology and a fellowship in gynecologic oncology at UCLA School of Medicine
The actions of Dr. Heaps during his examinations fall outside the expected care for a gynecologist. Many victims may be unaware of this.
Delivering Justice for Thousands of Women Abused During OBGYN Exams
The national law firm of Janet, Janet & Suggs has delivered justice for thousands of women abused during gynecologists’ pelvic and breast exams. Violations have included unnecessary and inappropriate probing, touching, comments, and photography.
Led by attorney Howard Janet, Esq. the firm’s effective and compassionate experience in representing survivors includes:
- Serving as liaison counsel for hundreds of USC female students in litigation against the University and their gynecologist, Dr. George Tyndall, for allegations regarding sexual misconduct.
- Achieving a historic $190M settlement with Johns Hopkins Hospital regarding sexual harassment and inappropriate conduct by OBGYN, Dr. Nikita Levy. The settlement secured by JJS is one of the largest in a sexual abuse case against a single abuser in U.S. history and helped women abused by Dr. Levy get the justice they deserved.
- Achieving a life-changing settlement against Penn State University on behalf of Victim 6, who was sexual abused at age 11 by Assistant Coach Jerry Sandusky.
- Helping survivors of sexual abuse at the hands of Catholic priests and the bishops who protected them.
Arias, Sanguinetti, Wang & Torrijos, LLP has proven trial experience - having tried cases involving major personal injuries, class actions, mass plaintiff wage and hour claims, wrongful death, products liability, medical malpractice, and employment issues. Over the last 30+ years, the firm's attorneys have recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for the firm's clients. The firm is led by Mike Arias, who is also 2019 President of the Consumer Attorneys of California.
Decades of Experience
Richard Serbin of JJS has been a crusader for survivors of clergy sexual abuse for decades. Elise Sanguinetti is the immediate past president of the American Association of Justice (formerly Association of Trial Lawyers of America). Mike Arias is the president of Consumer Attorneys of California. Andrew S. Janet of JJS is co-chair of the firm’s Sexual Abuse Division; Rita M. Gribko of JJS has over 25 years of litigation experience in civil, family, and criminal practice—most significantly representing survivors of childhood sexual abuse;.and Matthew White of JJS advocates for victims that suffered through sexual abuse as children at the hands of religious organizations and in other institutional settings