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Celebrity deaths highlight importance of estate planning

On Behalf of | Jul 31, 2019 | Wills

Estate planning can be an important part of preparing to take care of family members after people in Georgia pass on. The difficulties that accompany death without a will can grow significantly along with the size of an estate. Nevertheless, some celebrities with massive estates and ongoing, valuable song royalties have passed away without leaving behind a clear plan. As a result, family conflicts may intensify and a significant amount of a valuable estate may be lost to court costs and legal fees.

The deaths of Prince, Aretha Franklin and John Singleton have drawn attention to the importance of estate planning to protect family wealth. Singleton, the famed director, passed away in April 2019, leaving behind a fortune that reportedly totals $35 million. However, he did not leave an updated estate plan. While he had seven children, he left only a will created in 1993 when he had one child alone. All of the children are contesting the distribution of the estate in court. There are some trusts reportedly created by Singleton, and those can pass without the scrutiny and disputes of probate court. However, the lack of an updated will is creating family division as well as economic losses.

Aretha Franklin left behind a substantial estate as well as ongoing song revenues. She did not have a will or trust, however, although various family members have submitted more informal documents. As a result, her estate continues in dispute almost a year after her death.

Many people prefer to avoid thinking about death, but making an estate plan can be important for the peace of mind of the entire family. An estate planning lawyer can help people to develop a comprehensive plan and draft important documents like wills, trusts, and powers of attorney.