Judge Rules That Mistake In Trump NDA Makes It Void, Could Apply To Others

NEW YORK - 1990: New York State Supreme Court Building in New York City, used as a location by Law and Order and countless other television shows and films. (Photo by Waring Abbott/Getty Images)

New York Supreme Court Judge Arlene Bluth ruled Thursday that errors in the wording of a nondisclosure agreement between President Donald Trump’s team and a former campaign staffer make it much smaller in scope, thus not preventing the case from going to open court, according to a Thursday Yahoo News report.

The initial lawsuit was filed by Jessica Denson, a former campaign aide who said that she experienced “harassment and sexual discrimination” while working on the 2016 bid. Per Yahoo, she is suing for $25 million for being subjected to “severe and pervasive slander, aggravated harassment, attempted theft, cyberbullying, and sexual discrimination and harassment” at the hands of staffers including Camilo Sandoval, her supervisor then and the current acting chief information officer at the VA.

Campaign lawyers countered by demanding $1.5 million in damages, alleging that she broke the signed agreement by publishing “confidential information and disparaging statements.” They then moved to take the case to private arbitration, claiming that she agreed to that when she signed the contract. As opposed to a normal trial, records from arbitration can be sealed.

Bluth ruled that, due to various wording errors and incorrect phrasing in the NDA, it did not prevent Denson from taking her case public.

This could have far-ranging effects, as the NDA Denson signed seems to be similar to the one Trump uses in the White House and at the Trump Organization, along with his campaign. The ruling could be especially topical, as the Trump administration is currently trying to silence former aide Omarosa Manigault Newman by claiming that she violated the terms of the NDA.

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

Latest News
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Director of Audience:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: