Kanye West Swaps Lawyers on Eve of Kim Kardashian Divorce Hearing

On the eve of a crucial hearing in his divorce proceedings with estranged wife Kim Kardashian, Kanye West made the unorthodox move of firing his lawyer and hiring a new one.

Lawyer Chris Melcher, who had been representing Ye during the rapper’s acrimonious split, confirmed to Billboard that he and his client had parted ways ahead of Wednesday’s hearing. In Melcher’s place, West has hired Hollywood divorce lawyer Samantha Spector.

As TMZ notes, Spector previously represented Dr. Dre’s ex Nicole Young in her divorce proceedings against the producer and his lawyer Laura Wasser, who also currently reps Kim Kardashian, setting up a Spector-Wasser courthouse rematch of sorts. TMZ also cited a frayed relationship between West and Melcher for the lawyer’s sudden exit.

Spector is at least the fifth lawyer West has employed during his ongoing divorce proceedings from Kardashian.

In recent filings, Kardashian has stated that West’s since-deleted Instagram posts threatening Pete Davidson and their relationship has caused her “emotional distress.”

“I very much desire to be divorced. I have asked Kanye to keep our divorce private, but he has not done so,” Kardashian said in the filings, which followed her attempts to be declared legally single amid their prolonged battle over child custody and property issues. “Kanye has been putting a lot of misinformation regarding our private family matters and co-parenting on social media which has created emotional distress. I believe that the court terminating our marital status will help Kanye to accept that our marital relationship is over and to move forward on a better path which will assist us in peacefully co-parenting our children.”

In his return salvo on Feb. 26, West’s then-lawyer Melcher claimed that there was no proof that the rapper authored the distressing social media posts, and questioned the validity of the pair’s prenup.

“California premarital agreements entered on or after Jan. 1, 2002, are presumptively invalid,” West’s response filing stated. “The presumption of invalidity exists until rebutted at trial or the parties ratify the agreement. We are in the early stages of the case so no ratification has occurred.”

Both parties’ lawyers are expected in a Los Angeles court on Wednesday, 8:30 a.m. PST.