Erica Herman and Tiger Woods will participate in the US Open tennis tournament in New York in 2022
MIAMI – Tiger Woods’ ex-girlfriend has filed a lawsuit to be released from a nondisclosure agreement she says the golf superstar signed at the start of their relationship in 2017, court documents showed Wednesday.
Erica Herman, who lived with the 15-time winner at his Florida mansion until the end of 2022, filed the request in the Circuit Court of the 19th Judicial Circuit in Martin County, Florida.
According to court documents seen by AFP, Herman’s lawyers argue that the NDA she was required to sign is “void and unenforceable” under US federal legislation known as the Speak Out Act.
The law, which came into force last year in the wake of the MeToo movement, makes non-disclosure agreements unenforceable in cases involving sexual assault and harassment.
Herman’s case file does not go into further detail, and there are no specific allegations against Woods.
But in response to a question about the court record that reads “Does this case involve allegations of sexual abuse?” Herman’s lawyers have ticked the box marked “Yes”.
Herman’s attempt to renege on her NDA agreement marks an escalation of a legal dispute with Woods that began last October but has gone largely unreported in the US media.
In court documents also seen by AFP, Herman’s lawyers have sued the Jupiter Island Irrevocable Homestead Trust, which is the legal entity that owns Woods’ Florida home.
Herman’s suit alleges that “agents” for Woods tricked her into leaving the mansion last year by telling her to prepare for a vacation.
“By deception, agents for the defendant (Woods) convinced the plaintiff (Herman) to pack a suitcase for a short vacation and when she arrived at the airport, they told her she had been locked out of her residence,” the court said. so.
Herman’s lawyers claim Woods is in breach of an “oral lease” that allows her to live in the mansion – reportedly worth $54 million – and are suing for damages.
The legal dispute threatens to thrust Wood’s private life into the media spotlight once again, 14 years after the sex scandal that nearly destroyed his career and shocked the sports world.
Wood’s squeaky clean image imploded in 2009 after revelations of several infidelities, which led to a divorce from his first wife Elin Nordegren in 2010.
Since that scandal, Woods has slowly rebuilt his career, winning the Masters in 2019 to complete a fairytale comeback after years of injuries and multiple surgeries.
He faced another setback in 2021 when he was involved in a serious rollover crash in California that again put his playing career in jeopardy before making another comeback to golf’s major championship last year at the Masters.
The golf icon is not playing in this week’s Players Championship in Florida, but has gone on record as hoping to play in April’s Masters in Augusta.