How Kanye West is fighting to stop Kim Kardashian from becoming legally single

The television star and model has requested that her marriage status be terminated, but the rapper is throwing up a range of legal and financial obstacles

Kim Kardashian and Kanye West at a party in 2020.
Kim Kardashian and Kanye West at a party in 2020.JEAN-BAPTISTE LACROIX (AFP)

Kim Kardashian and Kanye West’s divorce has been in process for more than a year, and nothing in the thorny legal matter seems to be moving forward – indeed the protagonists seem to be growing more and more apart. The case is going so slowly that the Californian businesswoman decided to take action to speed up the process. In December, she filed documents to request her marriage status be terminated, so that she can restore her maiden name and be declared legally single again. This is taking place amid the ongoing divorce process, in which issues about their assets and custody of their four children must still be settled.

However, Kanye West, 44, is not willing to meet any of Kardashian’s demands. The rapper has other plans. West – who has legally changed his name to Ye – has been attacking his estranged wife on social media, while also calling for them to get back together. And now he is trying to stop Kardashian – who is currently in a relationship with comedian Pete Davidson – from becoming legally single.

Last Wednesday, he filed court documents in the Superior Court of California to preemptively block the reality TV star’s request to change her marital status. According to People magazine, which obtained the court documents presented by West’s lawyers, the rapper will not allow the 41-year-old model to be legally single again – mostly because he fears she will get married again. This dispute will be decided in a hearing next March, which will be attended by Kardashian’s high-profile lawyer Laura Wasser.

In the court documents, West’s lawyers argue that “terminating marital status before custody, property and support issues are resolved” could create “adverse consequences.” The filing added: “An early termination of status also creates barriers to obtaining evidence” if one of them “remarries before the case is concluded.”

West’s lawyers also outline several “conditions” with respect to what will happen if Kardashian decides to proceed with the process to terminate her marriage status. One of the conditions stipulates that Kardashian would lose her “marital privilege” with West. This privilege means that spouses cannot testify against one another, it also shields communications made in confidence during a marriage. In other words, without marital privilege, their private conversations can be seen and heard during the divorce trial, and it’s likely that they will also be leaked to the media.

“If status is terminated now without his condition, then a barrier to obtaining evidence regarding parenting and custody will arise if Kim remarries before the case is concluded,” the filing stated.

The conditions in the court document also concern Kardashian’s finances. West wants Kardashian to agree not to move assets from mutual funds and trusts before the terms of the division of property are decided. He also wants his so-called “right of reimbursement,” meaning that any money owed would be repaid if one of them died. But according to the entertainment news site Page Six, which also had access to the court documents, Kardashian’s lawyer claim these measures are unnecessary as the two have a prenuptial agreement.

According to West’s lawyers, Kardashian’s motion “should be denied without prejudice so that Kim can refile it with the mandatory corrections and requested conditions.” The court filing argues that this “is not an extravagant request” as it is merely asking for both parties to maintain their current marital status.


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