Dr. Dre has reached a settlement that will see him pay $100 million to his ex-wife Nicole Young to end a messy 18-month divorce battle, a source close to Dr. Dre’s legal team tells Billboard. TMZ was first to report the news.
The agreement will put to rest divorce litigation launched by Young in June 2020 after more than 24 years of marriage. The case has featured a bitter fight over a prenuptial agreement, accusations of spousal abuse, efforts to depose alleged mistresses, and side claims of embezzlement.
Dre — whose real name is Andre Romelle Young — will pay Young two $50 million installments, one immediate and one in a year, according to the insider. He’ll keep full control of his intellectual property, including his music copyrights and his brand trademarks, as well as his shares in Apple from his sale of Beats By Dre.
The rapper will also retain ownership of seven properties, including their $100 million estate in Los Angeles’s tony Brentwood neighborhood. A slew of luxury cars will be divided between the couple, and Young will retain her jewelry, among other asserts.
An attorney for Young did not return multiple requests for comment from Billboard. An attorney for Dre declined to comment. No public documents have yet been filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, where the divorce proceedings are taking place.
The total percentage of Dre’s assets represented by the $100 million settlement is unclear. According to media reports, his total net worth had previously been believed to be above $800 million. But in a November court filing as part of the divorce proceedings, his attorneys said his total assets amounted to just $458 million.
Ahead of the settlement, the primary battle line in the case was a prenuptial agreement signed when the couple married in 1996. Represented by well-known Hollywood divorce attorney Samantha Spector, Young challenged the enforceability and validity of the agreement, arguing in August 2020 court documents that Dre had “demanded” she sign the prenup by exerting “undue pressure,” leaving her “no choice but to do so.”
Things turned uglier in 2021. In January, Young made accusations of abuse, claiming that Dre once “held a gun to my head.” Dre, represented by high-profile celebrity divorce lawyer Laura Wasser, immediately denied all such claims. He later filed a response in court alleging she had fabricated the accusations as litigation leverage.
In April, Young won a ruling allowing her attorneys to depose three of Dre’s alleged mistresses, after a so-called discovery referee ruled that they might have information “relevant” to the prenup. And in September, Dre filed a separate lawsuit claiming Young stole more than $350,000 from his studio.
The lump-sum agreement will replace monthly payments of spousal support that are guaranteed under the prenuptial agreement, according to the source. Both sides have also agreed to not appeal the settlement. The couple’s children, Truice and Truly, are not involved in the proceedings, as both are adults.
Dre was also represented in the divorce proceedings by Howard King of the law firm King Holmes Paterno & Soriano, and by Anne C. Kiley of the law firm Elkins Kalt Weintraub Reuben Gartside LLP.