When her affair with the married Tiger Woods became public in 2009, Rachel Uchitel signed a nondisclosure agreement more than 30 pages long that she feels has controlled her life since. Other people are free to talk about her and the star golfer online and in the news media, of course, and she's weary of watching in silence as she's called a tramp, a mistress, a home-wrecker and a hooker. She'd speak up for herself, the New York Times reports, were it not for that document. "I've had it with NDAs," Uchitel said. In exchange for signing the NDA, she had negotiated an $8 million payment from Woods—$5 million up front, then another $1 million per year for three years. After taxes and celebrity lawyer Gloria Allred's cut, Uchitel was left with $2 million. And Woods' team didn't want to make the annual payments after all.
The NDA's terms are so sweeping that they prohibit Uchitel from acknowledging that she signed it. She filed for bankruptcy after being interviewed for an HBO documentary about Woods; "I wanted for once to be the one to narrate my story," Uchitel said. She received protection this year from creditors, per the Times. But a lawyer for Woods now is trying to end that protection, evidently so Uchitel can be sued for millions for breaking the NDA. The lawyer she trusted to handle her case has died, and Uchitel feels alone. She says Allred mishandled her case, charging her $1 million for less than a week's work and negotiating settlements for five to 10 other women with Woods' lawyers at the same time as her case. Uchitel said she broke down watching a preview of a documentary about mental health produced by Prince Harry and Oprah Winfrey. "Who is going to speak up for those of us who don't have Oprah, or a prince to rescue us?" she asked. (Read more Rachel Uchitel stories.)