A complaint by Erica Herman, Tiger Woods’ former girlfriend, filed against Woods this week was preceded by litigation filed in October against the golfer, according to court documents.
On Oct. 26, 2022, Herman filed a complaint against Jupiter Island Irrevocable Homestead Trust—a trust that Woods controls—that the entity was in violation of the Florida Residential Landlord Tenant Act, with Herman seeking more than $30 million for damages suffered.
Herman claims “by trickery, agents of the Defendant convinced the Plaintiff 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.” Court filings this week showed Herman shared the same address as Woods in Jupiter, Fla. Herman claims she was told she could not return to the house and “without legal counsel to aid in her in this emotional moment, they utilized a lawyer to confront her with proposals to resolve the wrongdoing they were in the midst of committing.”
Herman alleges she had an agreement that allowed her to live in the house for a certain amount of time. “The duties that were performed by, and expected of, Plaintiff were extensive and of an extraordinary nature in light of the overall circumstances and environment in which she lived,” the complaint reads. Herman says five years were left on the agreement.
Herman alleges she tried to return to the residence but was refused entrance. “Even worse, Defendant’s agents removed Plaintiffs personal belongings from her Residence and misappropriated in excess of $40,000 in cash that belonged to her, making scurrilous and defamatory allegations about how she obtained the money,” the complaint alleges.
On the civil cover sheet to the October complaint Herman responded with “no” to the question, “Does this case involve allegations of sexual abuse?” According to court documents filed this week against Woods, Herman answered “yes” to the same question.
Woods’ trust has responded by asking the court to compel arbitration rather than the matter being settled in state court, claiming a previously signed nondisclosure agreement called for arbitration for the matter. “Ms. Herman alleges she negotiated the oral tenancy agreement with an ‘agent(s)’ of the Trust,” reads a response filed on Dec. 20. “In reality, Ms. Herman was invited to live in the Residence while she was in a relationship with her former boyfriend, Eldrick Woods, who continues to live in the Residence with his two children. After Mr. Woods recently terminated the relationship, Ms. Herman was advised that she was no longer welcome in the Residence.”
The latest filing in the case was made on Jan. 19, 2023, in which Herman opposed the motion to go to arbitration and instead asked for the matter to be resolved by the court.
Herman was the general manager at Woods’ restaurant, The Woods Jupiter, and was first publicly seen with Woods at the 2017 Presidents Cup. Like Woods, Herman valued her private life, and had no social media presence. However, she would often be in attendance when Woods would compete, and Herman was with Woods last summer at the U.S. Open tennis championship to watch Serena Williams.
Woods’ agent has not responded to a Golf Digest request for comment.