Matt Lauer, who was fired from NBC after sexual assault allegations against him surfaced, is seeking $30 million as part of his ongoing contract with the network, the New York Post’s Page Six reported Thursday. The fired “Today” show host was terminated early Wednesday morning after a colleague submitted a “detailed complaint” about his alleged inappropriate behavior Monday night.
On Thursday, Lauer was seen for the first time in public since the sexual assault allegations against him came to light. He was seen with famed East End real estate and criminal lawyer Eddie Burke Jr. to whom he handed an envelope.
“They (Lauer’s lawyers) 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 told Page Six.
The disgraced host’s team was reportedly working on a plan to get him paid through the remainder of his $20 million a year contract, which still has a year and a half before it ends.
The news came as Lauer‘s ex-wife Nancy Alspaugh defended him in the wake of his firing from the “Today” show.
Nancy Alspaugh told Entertainment Tonight on Thursday that she was “shocked” by the accusations.
“He’s been the best person that’s ever held that job and I couldn’t imagine that anything that he would have done — that would have been so out of character for him — that would have caused that reaction,” Alspaugh, who was married to Lauer from 1981 to 1988, said. “He’s just a very giving person and charming and I think a lot of this stuff is obviously going to come to light, whether it’s true or not, and some of the things that are being stated may not be true.”
She added: “We have to find that out, you know? As time goes on here, people should be aware there’s a family involved here. There are three children and that’s — I think it’s important to be aware that this can destroy a family. Reporting on accusations before they know whether they’re real or not.”
After he was fired, multiple women came forward with stories of inappropriate behavior conducted by Lauer. One former staffer also claimed Lauer gave her a sex toy as a present, including an explicit note about how he wanted to use it to her.
Early Thursday, the 59-year-old responded to the allegations, saying he was “truly sorry.”
“Some of what is being said about me is…