A New Jersey appeals court ruled Friday that the former girlfriend of Brooklyn Nets CEO Brett Yormark cannot sue him for allegedly failing to keep promises he made on the condition that she have an abortion.
The court ruled that while Reyna Purcell's decision may have been influenced by Yormark, the final decision to end the pregnancy was hers.
"Under the law and public policy, there is no cause of action for terminating one's pregnancy and then regretting the decision due to subsequent events," the two-judge panel wrote.
Reyna Purcell, now 35, got pregnant shortly after she started dating Yormark, according to court filings. Purcell claimed she wanted to keep the baby, but Yormark threatened to break up with her if she did not end the pregnancy.
Purcell claimed Yormark promised to stay in the relationship and take her on vacation if she had an abortion, according to the ruling.
Purcell had an abortion in February 2011, according to the ruling, and Yormark ended the relationship soon after.
Purcell sued, saying Yormark fraudulently and maliciously coerced her into terminating the pregnancy and inflicted significant emotional distress.
A judge dismissed the case, ruling that because Yormark's promise was verbal and no lawyers were consulted, it was not enforceable. Promises of support outside of marriage must be in writing in order to be legally binding, the judge said.