A Florida judge ruled Wednesday that Tiger Woods’ ex-girlfriend Erica Herman must abide by the confidentiality agreement she allegedly signed and resolve their claims through private arbitration.
Circuit Judge Elizabeth Metzger rejected Herman’s attempt to void the 2017 agreement by alleging that Woods had committed sexual harassment against her, calling Herman’s allegations «vague and threadbare.»
«Herman has had the opportunity (to) provide factual specificity for any claim related to sexual assault or sexual harassment, however, he has not done so,» Metzger wrote as part of his 11-page opinion.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE SPORTS COVERAGE ON FOXNEWS.COM
Whether Herman actually signed the NDA was also called into question in the course of the litigation.
Metzger said the evidence shows that the NDA was negotiated between Herman and Woods in 2017, even if her lawyer, Benjamin Hodas, now questions whether she actually signed it. On May 9, Hodas admitted that Herman signed an agreement, but said he doesn’t remember ever seeing Woods’ lawyers appear in court.
Metzger said that if Herman had unequivocally denied signing the NDA, he would have ordered a hearing on the issue. However, since Herman isn’t sure if he signed it or not, that would have to be decided by a private arbitrator.
TIGER WOODS OUT OF PGA CHAMPIONSHIP AFTER ANKLE SURGERY
Herman sued Woods and the trust that owns his Florida property, seeking $30 million from the latter amid unspecified allegations of sexual harassment. He cited the Speak Out Act, which «prohibits the enforceability of a non-disclosure clause or non-disparagement clause agreed to before a dispute arises involving sexual assault or sexual harassment in violation of federal, tribal or state law.»
Herman alleged that Woods threatened to fire her from the restaurant where she worked if she did not sign the NDA. Hodas argued that it is a type of harassment, treating an employee different from others because of a sexual relationship. Metzger told Hodas that she needed more information about what allegedly happened to consider it. Hodas said he could not provide more information for fear of violating the NDA.
Woods’ attorney, JB Murray, called the allegation «absolutely without merit.»
CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP
Herman asked in the lawsuit that a judge strike down the NDA or give him guidance on what he could say publicly.
Associated Press contributed to this report.