Golf legend Tiger Woods is firing back at the complaint and $30 million lawsuit filed by his ex-girlfriend Erica Herman. The 15-time major championship winner, in his response to her filed complaint, says Herman is abusing the judicial process in her attempt to break the NDA and is “a jilted ex-girlfriend.”
“Ms. Herman’s Complaint does nothing more than cite to these federal statutes. She has never asserted any claims for sexual assault or sexual harassment against Mr. Woods, does not do so in this case, and cannot assert such claims truthfully. The federal Ending Forced Arbitration Act is not applicable to the claims in this case and Ms. Herman’s attempt to use the statute to prevent arbitration of her claims is nothing short of a rank abuse of the judicial process that undermines the purpose of the statute and those whom the statute seeks to protect.”
What Is The Federal Speak Out Act?
When Herman filed her complaint she cited the Federal Speak Out Act which prohibits the judicial enforceability of a nondisclosure clause or nondisparagement clause agreed to before a dispute arises involving sexual assault or sexual harassment in violation of federal, tribal, or state law.
In the court documents Herman filed she argues the NDA should be declared unenforceable under the federal Speak Out Act. In that new suit filed last week to revoke the NDA, under the question “Does this case involve the allegations of sexual abuse?” the yes box is checked, but she does not go into any details of specific allegations in the corresponding documents. Herman’s $30 million landlord-tenant suit was filed in October.
Woods split with Herman in October after about six years of dating. He alleges he told her he was ending the relationship, and that she was “no longer welcome” in his home. Woods also alleged he did provide her with temporary housing and financial support following the breakup.
We don’t know the facts of this case. All we have is Herman’s complaint and the response from Woods.
If Herman is to use the Speak Out Act, it would seem that she is prepared to make a legitimate claim or claims of sexual assault or harassment.
Whether any sexual assault or harassment occurred at the hands of Woods looks like it will be a matter for the courts to decide.
When Will Woods Tee It Up Again?
On the course, Woods last played at the Genesis Invitational in February where he finished tied for 45th at 1 under par.
He did not play in The Player’s Championship last week at TPC Sawgrass. But all signs point to the Masters.
“My intent last year was to play in all four majors, I got three of the four,” Woods said after the final round of the Genesis Invitational last month, his first start since July’s Open Championship at St. Andrews. “Hopefully this year I can get all four and maybe sprinkle in a few here and there. But that’s it for the rest of my career. I know that and I understand that. That’s just my reality.”
The 87th Masters at Augusta National will take place April 6th – 9th, Woods is a five-time champion.
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