Solve Your Legal Matter

NDA does not prevent publishing of Trump book

On Behalf of | Jul 9, 2020 | Business Litigation |

Mary Trump’s new “Too Much is Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man” is a tell-all account of life in the Trump family. She is the 55-year-old daughter of the late-Fred Trump Jr. and granddaughter of Fred Trump Sr., the president’s father. As an estranged member of the family, she airs a lot of the Trump family’s dirty laundry, particularly in regards to the president.

Setting aside the book’s explosive topic, there is also a legal issue regarding her right to publish the book. Mary and her brother signed a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) in 2001 as part of a settlement with the family. She alleges that the family coerced her grandfather into essentially cutting Fred Jr.’s family out of the estate because he cut ties with the family and worked outside the family business.

Family moves to stop publication

The family, led by the president’s brother, Robert S. Trump, sought to block the book’s publication in June of 2020 with a temporary restraining order. In early July, however, a New York appellate court reversed the ruling of a lower court. This latest development enables Simon & Schuster to release the likely bestseller, moving up the release date from July 28 to July 14.

NDA deemed invalid

Mary Trump’s defense argued that the original NDA was fraudulent because it did not include an accurate financial disclosure. Moreover, blocking the book was a violation of her First Amendment rights. In a separate statement, the publisher also pointed out that the NDA applied to a wealthy family in property development and not the family of a public figure like the president.

Not all contracts are enforceable

Disputes over contracts occur all the time for a wide range of issues. While putting an agreement in writing is a good idea, the courts may find the contract overly restrictive, based on a fraudulent premise, coercive or outdated.

Those with questions about their contractual obligations should speak with an attorney who handles business law and contracts like NDAs. They can help determine if the agreement is still binding after examining the details of the case. If it is no longer binding, qualified legal professionals can help clients litigate or find a new settlement that resolves the matter.