Rachel Witlieb Bernstein's attorneys filed a lawsuit Monday in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of NY against O'Reilly and his former employer, Fox News, for breach of contract and defamation.
"Defendant O'Reilly portrayed himself as a "target" and claimed that complaints against him arc extortionate", the more than $75,000 in damages seeking suit says of O'Reilly's widely published pushback media statements after the NYT article and the news of another $32 million settlement was made public in Octboer.
Bernstein also took issue with a Fox News statement claiming that no employees had ever previously raised complaints to management about O'Reilly's behavior.
"Knowing Ms. Bernstein and Mr. O'Reilly's other victims are afraid to speak out because he and Fox forced them to sign nondisclosure agreements, O'Reilly and Fox have made false and disparaging claims", Mr. Mullin said in a statement.
That line, and in addition other open proclamations, spoke to a break of his settlement manage Bernstein, she claims in Manhattan Federal Court.
The New York Times revealed in April that Bernstein left the system in the wake of documenting a protest about him "raging into the newsroom" and shouting at her. Both O'Reilly and Fox said that a hotline was in place to anonymously report complaints and that no one had ever called it to complain about O'Reilly. Bernstein alleges that Fox News, through its parent company, 21st Century Fox, falsely told The Times that it had received no complaints to an anonymous company hotline because, she contends, there wasn't a hotline while she was employed there in 2002. The exact amount she was paid is not known, but it was far less than the other settlements.
"Today's lawsuit has absolutely no merit, and Mr. O'Reilly will respond aggressively in court", Newman said. She did go to HR and other company executives to complain about him several times.
Fox News ended its association with O'Reilly in April due to sexual harassment allegations against the TV host and commentator.
O'Reilly allegedly made other, similar comments since then.
A lawyer for Ms. Bernstein, Neil Mullin, asked that O'Reilly and Fox release all victims from their non-disclosure agreements in order to "let the truth out".
Citing harm to Bernstein's reputation, "severe emotional distress, physical sickness, and loss of income", the complaint drills into the specific violations that it alleges both O'Reilly and FNC committed.
Bernstein says the statement was false.
Subsequent statements by O'Reilly are alleged to have violated the nondisparagement clause, according to Bernstein.