Lauer was fired from NBC News Wednesday after a woman said he sexually harassed her during the Sochi Winter Olympics and while at NBC. In the days since, more reports have surfaced with allegations of sexual harassment and sexual assault by Lauer from multiple women. He issued an apology, which some took as insincere, making it about himself while calling some reports about him “untrue or misleading.” Lauer did not identify which ones were untrue or misleading.
Lauer was one of the highest-paid anchors in television, making around $20-$25 million a year as host of Today, per varying reports, but now he’s trying to cash out on the remaining months of his contract.
A new report claims that Lauer’s lawyers are in the midst of seeing whether Lauer is able to be paid for the rest of his contract after his sudden dismissal, which would total an estimated $30 million. According to Page Six, Lauer signed his latest contract in 2016 for $20 million a year, and the payout is based on him having 18 months left on his contract.
“They are currently looking at his contract and determining whether the claims against him, which clearly would affect any moral clause in his contract and his ensuing termination would cut off his contractual rights to be paid through to the end of his contract,” a source described as being “close to Lauer’s team” said.
While reports of a payout after the dismissal of a disgraced presenter or executive have emerged in the past, it’s unclear if Lauer’s alleged sexual misconduct would violate a potential moral clause in his contract. If it does, a TV insider told Page Six, NBC can fire him and wouldn’t be responsible for the remaining $30 million.
More stories about Lauer are surfacing every day, and while archives of his Twitter page showed that he hadn’t tweeted in more than a year, Lauer took to deleting his account anyway.
H/T The Daily Beast