11:32 AM PT -- Floyd family attorney Lee Merritt joined us Monday on "TMZ Live" to further explain the potential lawsuit that might be filed against Kanye West -- and it sounds like intentional infliction of emotional distress might be the route they pursue.
He says George's brother, Philonise Floyd, is dead set on bringing some type of legal action against Ye -- with LM explaining he was irate Sunday when he heard the "Drink Champs" comments. Specifically, Lee says the notion died from an overdose and not Chauvin's knee on his neck is misinformation that's been debunked in court ... and agreed upon by a jury.
Finally, Lee tells us that the fact it was Kanye going after GF made this all the more personal and hurtful. Remember, he set up a college fund for George's daughter in 2020.
George Floyd's family is openly considering a potential lawsuit against Kanye West and Candace Owens -- a case that could be similar to the blockbuster one against Alex Jones, but also different in some key ways.
Civil rights attorney Lee Merritt, who's repping the fam, tells TMZ ... he's exploring all possible legal avenues to bring a potential lawsuit over what Kanye said about George on the new "Drink Champs" episode -- and he's also looking into what Candace put out in her new documentary.
Lee's already noted a defamation lawsuit isn't possible because George is deceased, but he is looking into other possible ways the Floyd estate, the George Floyd foundation or the family members themselves could bring claims -- and one path could be emotional distress.
The Sandy Hook families were able to successfully sue Alex Jones for defamation because he called the parents actors.
Kanye didn't say anything about George's family members, but his statements -- and allegedly the Owens documentary -- could still have a negative impact on them, which is why Merritt is pursuing grounds for a lawsuit against them.
The bigger point here, though, is that Lee wants Kanye and Candace to understand statements like the ones they're putting out in the world -- namely that George died from a fentanyl OD and pre-existing conditions, but not Derek Chauvin's knee -- are false and hurtful.
Lee tells us that type of rhetoric undermines the Floyd family's efforts to pass legislation, like the George Floyd Policing Act, and their work at large. He also says it deflects blame from the officers who've been convicted in connection to his murder, especially Chauvin.
There's still a lot of groundwork to do before anything's filed -- we're told Lee and the family have to go through Candace's doc, "The Greatest Lie Ever Sold," to see what exactly she said and if there's any basis to bring legal action.
Lee says he believes he'll have a more specific outline of his potential causes of action later this week. He says the family hasn't discussed a dollar amount for which they'd try to sue, but it's a good bet they'd try to get punitive damages -- and given Kanye's worth, those damages would have to be several million to truly punish him.