Legacy Planning Law Group
Weekly Blog

Estate & Elder Law

Protect Your Family. Preserve Your Legacy

If you’re interested in learning more about our process and the solution for you and your family, please book your free 15-minute call with us today!

Olivia Newton John

Olivia Newton-John had an Estate Plan that carried out all her wishes.

Olivia Newton-John had an Estate Plan that carried out all her wishes.

Olivia Newton-John had an Estate Plan that carried out all her wishes.The Australian singer and actress was worth $60million (£56million) at the time of her death on August 8, 2022 but spent her last years giving as much as she could to charity.

Olivia Newton-John would have celebrated her 74th birthday on September 26. The Cambridge-born star earned millions for her efforts in music and entertainment, and a staggering final act of charity saw Newton-John’s family splitting their inheritance with her charities.

Newton-John was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 1992 – in a tragic twist, her diagnosis came the same weekend her father died of cancer.

The Xanadu singer underwent extensive treatment including a partial mastectomy and was given the all-clear.

But in 2013, Newton-John was told she had breast cancer a second time and once again she beat the disease, getting another all-clear after treatment.

Shortly after her second diagnosis, the singer founded the Olivia Newton-John Cancer & Wellness Centre, which reportedly cost $189million (£156million), at a Melbourne hospital.

In 2015 she founded the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Research Institute and in 2020 launched the Olivia Newton-John Foundation Fund which sponsors research in herbal cancer treatments.

Unfortunately, in 2017 the star was diagnosed with stage four breast cancer.

She started selling off parts of her impressive real estate portfolio which spanned multiple countries with all of the proceeds going towards her charities.

She reportedly sold her incredible Australian abode for $4.6million (£3.8million). Newton-John had originally purchased the 187-acre property in the eighties and rebuilt her home in the early nineties.

Over her decades at the home, the star allegedly planted 10,000 trees on the property and sold it with the intent that someone equally involved and loving of wildlife would continue her work.

Newton-John also reportedly wanted to sell her Californian horse ranch, believed to be listed for $5.4million (£4.46million), but later decided to rather live out her last days at the home and transferred the ownership to her husband John Easterling, 70.

The Physical singer had married actor Matt Lattanzi in 1984 and although they would split up just over a decade later, their marriage did produce their only child Chloe Rose Lattanzi, now 36.

Newton-John got married to John Easterling, 70, in 2008, who is reportedly expected to inherit her fortune alongside Chloe.

Newton-John first rose to fame in the music industry, releasing her first single in 1966 and, seven years later, her hit Let Me Be There hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100.

Her debut album in 1971, If Not For You, held an array of tracks that peaked in Australia, North America and the United Kingdom

Over her career, Newton-John released over 25 albums and her successful singing career soon translated into Hollywood stardom.

The singer was already a well-known face on Australian television by the star of the seventies.

In 1964, while still in high school, Newton-John’s acting prowess shone through as she starred in her school’s production of The Admirable Crichton and became the runner-up for the Young Sun’s Drama Award for best schoolgirl actress.

Following this award, Newton-John often appeared in Australian shows and telefilms, with her fame catapulting when she won the televised talent contest Sing, Sing, Sing in 1965.

In 1970 the singer was a part of the group Toomorrow which starred in a science fiction movie musical named after the group.

Unfortunately, most of the group’s projects failed and they ultimately disbanded.

After Toomorrow, Newton-John embarked on her successful solo music career and returned to film in 1978 for what would become the role of a lifetime.

Newton-John starred alongside John Travolta for the first time in Grease. The dream team appeared on screen again in 1983’s romantic comedy Two of a Kind.

Although she starred in less than 20 films during her life, her role as Sandy Olsson seemed to be enough to cement her star as a prominent actress.

Alongside her lucrative musical and acting careers, Newton-John was also a successful author of her memoir Don’t Stop Believin’ and some healthy eating cookbooks.

Read more related articles here:

Olivia Newton-John’s $100 million dying wish

Olivia Newton-John’s legacy: Her net worth, philanthropic efforts and beyond

Also, read one of our previous Blogs here:

The Queen’s clothes and jewels: Who inherits her enormous collection?

Click here to check out our On Demand Video about Estate Planning.

Click here for a short informative video from our own Attorney Bill O’Leary.

Lisa Marie Presley

Lisa Marie Presley’s Estate: A Legal View on Challenges Ahead

Lisa Marie Presley’s Death Highlights Estate Challenges of Multigenerational Fame

Lisa Marie Presley’s Estate: A Legal View on Challenges Ahead. Nothing educates the public about estate law (and, sometimes, probate litigation) like the death of a celebrity. The passing of Lisa Marie Presley is likely no exception. High-profile deaths often shine a light on the sometimes complex post-death proceedings to shuttle a person’s wealth to his or her heirs or beneficiaries — assuming the estate is solvent when all is said and done and there is something to distribute. This process is referred to as “post-death administration” and, often, with famous decedents, it is marred by complications such as pending lawsuits and claims by creditors. By all accounts, it appears Ms. Presley’s estate will encounter the same fate.

Ms. Presley’s untimely death presents complex estate administration issues that will need to be sorted out in the coming months and, likely, years. What typically happens, or should happen, when a person dies is for her representative (i.e. executor or trustee) to marshal all of her assets, pay her debts (including applicable federal estate taxes), and then distribute any balance to her heirs or beneficiaries. This process is meant to be simple and streamlined but, in reality, can take years.

Although Ms. Presley’s passing is very recent, publicly-available information indicates her estate administration may teeter on the complicated side. The reasons for this include the fact that Ms. Presley is what one would call a “legacy celebrity.” Her fame didn’t simply start and end with her. She inherited more than wealth from her father, who was none other than the King of Rock and Roll. Simply being the daughter of Elvis Presley gave Ms. Presley icon status, arguably in perpetuity. Adding to her legacy status is the fact that Ms. Presley’s mother, Pricilla Presley, is a famous actress. The fact that Lisa Marie Presley herself acted and released albums added additional layers of fame. Of course, we would be remiss if we didn’t mention Ms. Presley’s (albeit brief) marriage to Michael Jackson, the King of Pop. Most go through life not even coming remotely close to being associated with any sort of musical juggernaut, and yet, Ms. Presley was closely linked to two of the most talented musical giants of all time. While all that fame should and typically does come with a lot of wealth, sadly, in Ms. Presley’s case, that may not be the reality for her heirs.

All of that messy litigation raises at least one burning question: What will Ms. Presley’s three daughters inherit from her? In other words, how much of that Elvis Presley legacy is still left to be passed down to his granddaughters, two of whom are still minors? We know that Ms. Presley personally owned Graceland and her father’s personal effects, so there is a possibility that her daughters will inherit Ms. Presley’s interest in those assets. That is assuming those assets are not consumed by their liabilities. Ms. Presley’s heirs may also inherit any intellectual property rights that Ms. Presley owned and monetized. Finally, Ms. Presley’s untimely death may generate future revenue for her heirs in the form of post-mortem book deals and movies.

Read more related articles at:

All Shook Up: What’s Left in Lisa Marie Presley’s Estate?

These Are All the Plans for Graceland After Lisa Marie Presley’s Death

Click here to check out our On Demand Video about Estate Planning.

Click here for a short informative video from our own Attorney Bill O’Leary.

2002 Celebrity Deaths

Final Goodbye: Remembering The Celebrities We Lost In 2022.

However, she was far from the only famous person to pass away over the course of the year.

Final goodbye: Remembering the celebrities we lost in 2022

Sidney Poitier, 94. He played roles of such dignity and intelligence that he transformed how Black people were portrayed on screen, becoming the first Black actor to win an Oscar for best lead performance and the first to be a top box-office draw. Jan. 6.

Bob Saget, 65. The actor-comedian known for his role as beloved single dad Danny Tanner on the sitcom “Full House” and as the wisecracking host of “America’s Funniest Home Videos.” Jan. 9.

Robert Durst, 78. The wealthy New York real estate heir and failed fugitive dogged for decades with suspicion in the disappearance and deaths of those around him before he was convicted last year of killing his best friend. Jan. 10.

Ronnie Spector, 78. The cat-eyed, bee-hived rock ‘n’ roll siren who sang such 1960s hits as “Be My Baby,” “Baby I Love You” and “Walking in the Rain” as the leader of the girl group the Ronettes. Jan. 12.

André Leon Talley, 73. A towering and highly visible figure of the fashion world who made history as a rare Black editor in an overwhelmingly white industry. Jan. 18.

Louie Anderson, 68. His four-decade career as a comedian and actor included his unlikely, Emmy-winning performance as mom to twin adult sons in the TV series “Baskets.” Jan. 21.

Ivan Reitman, 75. The influential filmmaker and producer behind many of the most beloved comedies of the late 20th century, from “Animal House” to “Ghostbusters.” Feb. 12.

Sally Kellerman, 84. The Oscar and Emmy nominated actor who played Margaret “Hot Lips” Houlihan in director Robert Altman’s 1970 film “MASH.” Feb. 24.

Emilio Delgado, 81. The actor and singer who for 45 years was a warm and familiar presence in children’s lives and a rare Latino face on American television as fix-it shop owner Luis on “Sesame Street.” March 10.

Traci Braxton, 50. A singer who was featured with her family in the reality television series “Braxton Family Values.” March 12.

Madeleine Albright, 84. A child refugee from Nazi- and then Soviet-dominated Eastern Europe who rose to become the first female secretary of state and a mentor to many current and former American statesmen and women. March 23.

Taylor Hawkins, 50. For 25 years, he was the drummer for Foo Fighters and best friend of frontman Dave Grohl. March 25.

Bobby Rydell, 79. A pompadoured heartthrob of early rock ’n roll who was a star of radio, television and the movie musical “Bye Bye Birdie.” April 5.

Liz Sheridan, 93. She played doting mom to Jerry Seinfeld on his hit sitcom. April 15.

Orrin G. Hatch, 88. The longest-serving Republican senator in history who was a fixture in Utah politics for more than four decades. April 23.

Naomi Judd, 76. Her family harmonies with daughter Wynonna turned them into the Grammy-winning country stars The Judds. April 30. Died by suicide.

Mickey Gilley, 86. A country singer whose namesake Texas honky-tonk inspired the 1980 film “Urban Cowboy” and a nationwide wave of Western-themed nightspots. May 7.

Fred Ward, 79. A veteran actor who brought a gruff tenderness to tough-guy roles in such films as “The Right Stuff,” “The Player” and “Tremors.” May 8.

Bob Lanier, 73. The left-handed big man who muscled up beside the likes of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as one of the NBA’s top players of the 1970s. May 10.

Vangelis, 79. The Greek electronic composer who wrote the unforgettable Academy Award-winning score for the film “Chariots of Fire” and music for dozens of other movies, documentaries and TV series. May 17.

Ray Liotta, 67. The actor best known for playing mobster Henry Hill in “Goodfellas” and baseball player Shoeless Joe Jackson in “Field of Dreams.” May 26.

Andy “Fletch” Fletcher, 60. Keyboardist for British synth pop giants Depeche Mode for more than 40 years. May 26.

Tony Siragusa, 55. The charismatic defensive tackle who was part of one of the most celebrated defenses in NFL history with the Baltimore Ravens. June 22.

James Caan, 82. The curly-haired tough guy known to movie fans as the hotheaded Sonny Corleone of “The Godfather” and to television audiences as both the dying football player in the classic weeper “Brian’s Song” and the casino boss in “Las Vegas.” July 6.

Ivana Trump, 73. A skier-turned-businesswoman who formed half of a publicity power couple in the 1980s as the first wife of former President Donald Trump and mother of his oldest children. July 14. Injuries suffered in an accident.

Paul Sorvino, 83. An imposing actor who specialized in playing crooks and cops like Paulie Cicero in “Goodfellas” and the NYPD sergeant Phil Cerreta on “Law & Order.” July 25.

Tony Dow, 77. As Wally Cleaver on the sitcom “Leave It to Beaver,” he helped create the popular and lasting image of the American teenager of the 1950s and 60s. July 27.

Nichelle Nichols, 89. She broke barriers for Black women in Hollywood as communications officer Lt. Uhura on the original “Star Trek” television series. July 30.

Pat Carroll, 95. A comedic television mainstay for decades, Emmy-winner for “Caesar’s Hour” and the voice of Ursula in “The Little Mermaid.” July 30.

Bill Russell, 88. The NBA great who anchored a Boston Celtics dynasty that won 11 championships in 13 years — the last two as the first Black head coach in any major U.S. sport — and marched for civil rights with Martin Luther King Jr. July 31.

Olivia Newton-John, 73. The Grammy-winning superstar who reigned on pop, country, adult contemporary and dance charts with such hits as “Physical” and “You’re the One That I Want” and won countless hearts as everyone’s favorite Sandy in the blockbuster film version of “Grease.” Aug. 8.

Wolfgang Petersen, 81. The German filmmaker whose World War II submarine epic “Das Boot” propelled him into a blockbuster Hollywood career that included the films “In the Line of Fire,” “Air Force One” and “The Perfect Storm.” Aug. 12.

Anne Heche, 53. The Emmy-winning film and television actor whose dramatic Hollywood rise in the 1990s and accomplished career contrasted with personal chapters of turmoil. Aug. 14. Injuries suffered in a car crash.

Len Dawson, 87. The Hall of Fame quarterback whose unmistakable swagger in helping the Kansas City Chiefs to their first Super Bowl title earned him the nickname “Lenny the Cool.” Aug. 24.

Bob LuPone, 76. As an actor, he earned a Tony Award nomination in the original run of “A Chorus Line” and played Tony Soprano’s family physician, and also helped found and lead the influential off-Broadway theater company MCC Theater for nearly 40 years. Aug. 27.

Mikhail Gorbachev, 91. The last leader of the Soviet Union, he set out to revitalize it but ended up unleashing forces that led to the collapse of communism, the breakup of the state and the end of the Cold War. Aug. 30.

Queen Elizabeth II, 96. Britain’s longest-reigning monarch and a rock of stability across much of a turbulent century. Sept. 8.

Ramsey Lewis, 87. A renowned jazz pianist whose music entertained fans over a more than 60-year career that began with the Ramsey Lewis Trio and made him one of the country’s most successful jazz musicians. Sept. 12.

Jean-Luc Godard, 91. The iconic “enfant terrible” of the French New Wave who revolutionized popular cinema in 1960 with his first feature, “Breathless,” and stood for years among the film world’s most influential directors. Sept. 13.

Ken Starr, 76. A former federal appellate judge and a prominent attorney whose criminal investigation of Bill Clinton led to the president’s impeachment and put Starr at the center of one of the country’s most polarizing debates of the 1990s. Sept. 13.

Louise Fletcher, 88. A late-blooming star whose riveting performance as the cruel and calculating Nurse Ratched in “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” set a new standard for screen villains and won her an Academy Award. Sept. 23.

Coolio, 59. The rapper was among hip-hop’s biggest names of the 1990s with hits including “Gangsta’s Paradise” and “Fantastic Voyage.” Sept. 28.

Loretta Lynn, 90. The Kentucky coal miner’s daughter whose frank songs about life and love as a woman in Appalachia pulled her out of poverty and made her a pillar of country music. Oct. 4.

Angela Lansbury, 96. The scene-stealing British actor who kicked up her heels in the Broadway musicals “Mame” and “Gypsy” and solved endless murders as crime novelist Jessica Fletcher in the long-running TV series “Murder, She Wrote.” Oct. 11.

Robbie Coltrane, 72. The baby-faced comedian and character actor whose hundreds of roles included a crime-solving psychologist on the TV series “Cracker” and the gentle half-giant Hagrid in the “Harry Potter” movies. Oct. 14.

Leslie Jordan, 67. The Emmy-winning actor whose wry Southern drawl and versatility made him a comedy and drama standout on TV series including “Will & Grace” and “American Horror Story.” Oct. 24.

Jerry Lee Lewis, 87. The untamable rock ‘n’ roll pioneer whose outrageous talent, energy and ego collided on such definitive records as “Great Balls of Fire” and “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On” and sustained a career otherwise upended by personal scandal. Oct. 28.

Takeoff, 28. A rapper best known for his work with the Grammy-nominated trio Migos. Nov. 1. Killed in a shooting.

Aaron Carter, 34. The singer-rapper who began performing as a child and had hit albums starting in his teen years. Nov. 5.

Jeff Cook, 73. The guitarist who co-founded the country group Alabama and steered them up the charts with such hits as “Song of the South” and “Dixieland Delight.” Nov. 8.

Gallagher, 76. The long-haired, smash-’em-up comedian who left a trail of laughter, anger and shattered watermelons over a decadeslong career. Nov. 11.

John Aniston, 89. The Emmy-winning star of the daytime soap opera “Days of Our Lives” and father of actress Jennifer Aniston. Nov. 11.

Jason David Frank, 49. He played the Green Power Ranger Tommy Oliver on the 1990s children’s series “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.” Nov. 19.

Irene Cara, 63. The Oscar, Golden Globe and two-time Grammy winning singer-actor who starred and sang the title cut from the 1980 hit movie “Fame” and then belted out the era-defining hit “Flashdance … What a Feeling” from 1983′s “Flashdance.” Nov. 25.

Christine McVie, 79. The British-born Fleetwood Mac vocalist, songwriter and keyboard player whose cool, soulful contralto helped define such classics as “You Make Loving Fun,” “Everywhere” and “Don’t Stop.” Nov. 30.

Gaylord Perry, 84. The Baseball Hall of Famer and two-time Cy Young Award winner was a master of the spitball who wrote a book about using pitch. Dec. 1.

Bob McGrath, 90. An actor, musician and children’s author widely known for his portrayal of one of the first regular characters on the children’s show “Sesame Street.” Dec. 4.

Kirstie Alley, 71. The actor known for her work on “Cheers” and “Veronica’s Closet,” among many other films and TV shows, reportedly died of cancer. Dec. 5.

Gary Friedkin, 70. A local actor know for his work on “Happy Days” and “Young Doctors in Love,” died from COVID-19 complications Friday in a Youngstown hospice.

Mike Leach, 61. The gruff, pioneering and unfiltered college football coach who helped revolutionize the game with the Air Raid offense. Dec. 12.

Stephen “tWitch” Boss, 40. The longtime and beloved dancing DJ on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” and a former contestant on “So You Think You Can Dance.” Dec. 13. Died by suicide.

Franco Harris, 72. The Hall of Fame running back whose heads-up thinking authored the “Immaculate Reception,” considered the most iconic play in NFL history. Dec. 20.

Pelé, 82. The Brazilian king of soccer who won a record three World Cups and became one of the most commanding sports figures of the last century — as soccer’s most prolific scorer with Brazilian club Santos and the Brazil national team. Dec. 29.

Barbara Walters, 93. An intrepid interviewer, anchor and program host, she led the way as the first woman to become a TV news superstar. Dec. 30.

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, 95. A German theologian who tried to reawaken Christianity in a secularized Europe and who will be remembered as the first pontiff in 600 years to resign. Benedict announced in 2013 that he no longer had the strength to run the 1.2 billion-strong Catholic Church. Dec. 31.

Final goodbye: Remembering the celebrities we lost in 2022

Read more related articles here:

Notable Deaths of 2022

In Memoriam: Notable people who died in 2022

Also, read one of our previous Blogs here:

Celebrity Deaths in 2020 — Six Estate Planning Lessons We Can Learn

Click here to check out our On Demand Video about Estate Planning.

Click here for a short informative video from our own Attorney Bill O’Leary.

 

 

Aaron Carter

Tragically Aaron Carter ‘died without a will’ leaving the state to decide who will inherit his assets.

Tragic Aaron Carter ‘died without a will’ leaving the state to decide who will inherit his assets including his $800,000 house which he had put on the market shortly before his deathSinger did not write a will, meaning California will decide who inherits estate
Sources say Carter was not in strong financial health at the time of his death
His $800,000 Lancaster house had been put up for sale but is now off market

Aaron Carter died without leaving a will meaning the state of California will decide who will inherit his assets, it has been revealed.

The 34-year-old, who passed away earlier this month, had been advised by his attorney to make a will, particularly after the birth of his 11-month-old son Prince.

The singer shared Prince with his on-again, off-again fiancée Melanie Martin, who started their rocky relationship in 2020.

The LA County Department of Children and Family Services were forced to get involved because of the domestic disputes between the tumultuous couple, and removed Prince from their home.

He has been living with Martin’s mother since September, reports TMZ.

The star had put his Lancaster home up for sale for around $800,000 in the weeks prior to his death but it has now been taken off the market

In California, the child normally inherits their single parent’s estate if they die without a will.

But sources said Carter was not in a strong financial position when he was found dead in his home on November 5.

If a sale goes ahead, Prince would likely have security in any equity it brings.

Last week, Martin was seen moving her stuff out of his home.

Since January 2020, Carter and Martin had a rocky relationship leading up to the birth of their son on November 22, 2021.

The singer told DailyMail.com in August that the two weren’t together and were done for good.

It’s unclear what the relationship status of the pair was leading up to Carter’s death was – but Martin released a statement and called him her ‘fiancée.’

The couple were on and off in their relationship. Carter had split from fiancée Martin just one week after they welcomed their first child together in 2021
Martin could be seen crying outside Carter’s California home after he was found dead
She wrote: ‘My fiancée Aaron Carter has passed away. I love Aaron with all my heart and it’s going to be a journey to raise a son without a father.

‘Please respect the privacy of my family as we come to terms with the loss of someone we love greatly.

‘We are still in the process of accepting this unfortunate reality. Your thoughts and prayers are greatly appreciated.’

Carter filed custody of their son and a petition for protection at the Antelope Valley Courthouse in Los Angeles County earlier this year.

At the time, he accused Martin of ’emotional distress, anguish, shoving, & scratching’, and claimed she used the threat of suicide to abuse him ’emotionally.’

One of the last people he texted was his manager Taylor Helgeson, telling him he was optimistic about the future and the release of his new music.

Helgeson recalled his final conversation with the I Want Candy singer the night before he died – and his thrill about the release of his new album he planned on recording in Los Angeles this month.

‘He was so excited, he was extremely optimistic,’ Helgeson told The US Sun. ‘It was a few years since we released Love, and he felt ready to do another one… it was the first time in a while that I’ve seen him so excited. He had more [to give], and he didn’t quit.’

Taylor Helgeson, Aaron Carter’s manager, revealed the singer last texted him on November 4 about his excitement to record his new album.
The night before Carter died, he had invited a friend to his home to begin recording for his new album – but the friend never made it
In one of Carter’s final messages to Helgeson on November 4, he had texted his manager to check in.

Helgeson said he asked the singer how he was doing. To which he responded: ‘I’m just headed back to the house. I was in L.A. All good though. Things are looking up.’

Carter later looked over the songs for his new album and added: ‘Holy s****! The new album, what the f***? This is definitely a Grammy!’

The manager responded: ‘Yeah, and you deserve it.’

‘Huge! Our best work yet,’ Carter last said at 6.32pm, Helgeson told The Sun.

Carter would later call Helgeson – but he was unable to answer because he was on a plane. The singer then called another friend and invited him over to his Lancaster home to begin recording vocals for the album.

‘From what I heard, that was around 9.30pm,’ Helgeson said. ‘But he never made it to the house.’

The singer was set to record his new album this month with Denmark producers.

Carter was set to record the album that he called Grammy material alongside producers from Denmark in Los Angeles this month

Carter began acting out of character leading up to his death, including missing important meetings

Helgeson said Carter felt as if he could handle all the issues in his life.

‘This album was going to be him owning everything,’ Helgeson said. ‘He was going to take accountability, and he felt that was going to be the best way to do it.’

‘He wouldn’t miss a show for anything if he could help it,’ Helgeson told the news outlet. ‘In the last few weeks, he missed some things, and that was so uncharacteristic of him, and I was upset.’

At the time, Helgeson presented Carter with an intense, custom-built rehab program as he began to fall off the wagon. He even confronted Carter when the star went on Instagram live stream and was seen ‘huffing.’

Carter previously admitted to having a huffing addiction but told Helgeson that it wasn’t real.

In a previous interview with DailyMail.com, his public relations aide Holly Davidson revealed the pop star wanted to resolve his children’s custody battle before he went to rehab.

‘I want to be better and I am trying to be better, but I cannot do it now,’ he told Davidson, of ITC PR.

‘He set his priorities as trying to deal with the courts over his son, the new music and life,’ the aide told DailyMail.com. ‘Then he wanted to go to rehab.’

Carter had been in a long-running custody battle with on-again/off-again girlfriend Melanie Martin, the mother of his 11-month-old son Prince.

The rehab plan was devised with addiction consultant Brenden Borrowman, co-founder of Utah drug treatment center ReBoot. According to its website, ReBoot uses ‘time-proven military behavioral science’ to develop self-worth and positive behavior.

Borrowman said that Aaron was ‘savable’. ‘I truly believe that,’ he previously told DailyMail.com.

Read more related articles at:

Aaron Carter ‘died without a will’ – leaving decision on who gets his house & inheritance up to the state

AARON CARTER DIED WITHOUT A WILL

Also, read one of our previous Blogs here:

10 CELEBRITY ESTATE PLANNING MISTAKES

Click here to check out our On Demand Video about Estate Planning.

Click here for a short informative video from our own Attorney Bill O’Leary.

10 Celebrity Estate Planning Mistakes

10 Celebrity Estate Planning Mistakes

10 Celebrity Estate Planning Mistakes. Just like regular folks, celebrities flub their estate planning, costing their intended heirs money and/or grief. What’s different? Bigger dollar amounts and notoriety, mostly. A new book, Trial & Heirs, by probate litigator Andrew W. Mayoras and his estate lawyer wife, Danielle B. Mayoras, uses celebrity cliffhanger cases to dish out real-life advice.The mistakes celebrities have made run the gamut, from never writing a will (music legend Jimi Hendrix) to relying on a “letter of wishes” to give away belongings (Princess Di). So read on, and learn from their mistakes.

Celebrity: Jimi Hendrix

Mistake: Never writing a will.

Story: Music legend Jimi Hendrix died at age 27 in 1970 without a will. Under state law, his dad, Al, got everything, leaving his close brother Leon with nothing. Al built Hendrix’s musical legacy into an $80 million venture, but in his own will cut out Leon and his family, in favor of his adopted daughter through a later marriage.

Lesson: Even young rock stars aren’t immortal. Sign a will or living trust document.

Celebrity: Warren Burger

Mistake: Relying on do-it-yourself documents.

Story: Chief Justice Warren Burger died in 1995 with a $1.8 million estate and a will of 176 words he typed up himself. There’s something to be said for brevity, but in this case, his family paid $450,000 in estate taxes, something that could have been easily avoided. And his executors had to pay to go to court to get approval to complete administrative acts, such as selling real estate, that typically a well-drafted will would have allowed without court approval.

Lesson: Even if you know a bit about the law, get an estate pro to write your will.

Celebrity: Princess Di

Mistake: Relying on a “letter of wishes” to give away belongings.

Story: At her death in 1997, Princess Diana left a detailed will, naming her sister and mother as executors. She also wrote a separate “letter of wishes” asking her executors, at their discretion, to divide her belongings among her sons and her 17 godchildren. But instead of getting stuff worth an estimated 100,000 pounds, each godchild got only a trinket.

Lesson: Don’t rely on executors’ sense of noblesse oblige; put bequests in your will or trust or in a signed, dated list.

Celebrity: Heath Ledger

Mistake: Not updating documents.

Story: When actor Heath Ledger died at age 28 in 2008, he had a will, but it was written three years before he died, prior to his relationship with Michelle Williams and the birth of their daughter, Matilda Rose. The will left everything to his parents and sister. When Ledger’s uncles raised fears that his father wouldn’t properly care for Matilda Rose, Ledger’s father said he would.

Lesson: When life changes, update your will, retirement accounts and insurance policies.

Celebrity: Doris Duke

Mistake: Bad choice of executor.

Story: Tobacco heiress Doris Duke, who died in 1993 with a fortune estimated at $1.3 billion, named her butler as executor and as trustee for a huge charitable foundation. After the butler’s lifestyle and spending habits were called into question, he was removed from his duties by a probate judge, then reinstated by New York’s highest court. A settlement agreement created a board of trustees to manage the foundation.

Lesson: Don’t let the butler do it. Pick someone competent and trustworthy as your executor.

Celebrity: Marlon Brando

Mistake: Making oral promises.

Story: Angela Borlaza, actor Brando’s “major domo,” claimed Brando gave her the house she lived in, saying he had kept it in his name for tax reasons. She settled with the executors of his estate for $125,000. She also claimed Brando promised her continued employment with a company he owned, and settled that claim out of court.

Lesson: Oral promises won’t do; if you’re serious, execute the right written documents.

Celebrity: Florence “FloJo” Griffith Joyner

Mistake: Not telling your executor where to find your original documents.

Story: When Olympic sprinter Florence Griffith Joyner died at 38, in 1998, her husband couldn’t find her original will, and failed to file it with the probate court within 30 days of her death, as required by California law. Joyner’s husband and mother took disputes, including whether Joyner promised her mother could live in their house the rest of her life, to court. Joyner never filed the original will, and the judge eventually appointed a third party to administer the estate.

Lesson: Tell at least two people you trust where to find your original will. To be safe, keep two copies, and leave the original in your bank safety deposit box, or in your lawyer’s fireproof safe.

Celebrity: Leona Helmsley

Mistake: Taking care of the dog, but not the grandkids, without getting her sanity certified.

Story: When she died in 2007, hotel tycoon Leona Helmsley’s will left most of her $5 billion estate to charity, created a $12 million trust for her Maltese dog, Trouble, and completely cut out two of her four grandchildren. The two stiffed grandkids sued her estate, claiming she wasn’t mentally fit to create her will and trust. The case settled, with Trouble getting $2 million, and the two grandkids sharing $6 million plus legal fees.

Lesson: If you’re older and cutting out relatives, have your lawyer conduct and sign a “mini mental evaluation” attesting to your competence.

Celebrity: Brooke Astor

Mistake: Naming wrong person as agent under power of attorney.

Story: In October 2009, socialite Brooke Astor’s son Anthony Marshall was convicted of fraud and grand larceny relating to his handling of his late mother’s estate. The 14 counts of which a New York jury found Marshall guilty included misusing his power of attorney over her financial affairs by giving himself a retroactive $1 million raise for managing her finances. Marshall denied wrongdoing and is appealing his conviction.

Lesson: Pick your agent with care, and require a backup agent to sign off, too, on major decisions.

Celebrity: Ted Williams

Mistake: Conflicting directions on burial wishes.

Story: In his will, baseball legend Ted Williams said he wished to be cremated. But his two children from a second marriage produced a grease-stained note saying he wished to be put in biostasis after his death, and they froze his body after his death in 2002. His eldest daughter fought to have his body unfrozen and cremated, but gave up the fight when she ran out of money.

Lesson: If you change your mind about your burial wishes, change your will by adding a codicil, or writing a new one.

Read more related articles here:

Celebrity Estate Planning Mistakes

6 Estate-Planning Mistakes Celebrities Made

Lessons To Be Learned From Failed Celebrity Estates

Also, read one of our previous Blogs at:

Which Stars Made the Biggest Estate Planning Blunders?

Click here to check out our On Demand Video about Estate Planning.

Click here for a short informative video from our own Attorney Bill O’Leary.

Don’t Be Like Johnny Depp, Get a Prenup

Don’t Be Like Johnny Depp, Get a Prenup

Not having a prenuptial agreement can be a costly mistake — not just for Johnny Depp, but for you as well.

Depp, 52, and his wife of just 15 months, Amber Heard, 30, are heading for splitsville. Heard filed a divorce petition earlier this week, citing irreconcilable differences, and requested spousal support. Depp’s response, according to The Associated Press, asked the judge to deny Heard’s support request — and asked that Heard pay her own attorney’s fees.

The couple reportedly did not have a prenuptial agreement, which could leave Captain Jack Sparrow’s treasure rife for plundering.
“Depp would be a poster boy for a prenup,” said Arlene Dubin, chair of the matrimonial and family law practice at Moses & Singer in New York. “If you were checking off the boxes [of who should consider one], he pretty much has them all.”

Generally speaking, she said, prenups are an important consideration for:

  • older couples;
  • those who come into the marriage with assets (as he did with a reported $400 million);
  • people who have children from prior relationships (as he does);
  • people who expect future celebrity and significant income (as he could, despite dismal reviews of “Alice Through the Looking Glass”).

Without one, the process of getting unhitched can lead to protracted and expensive legal battles, or result in a less-fair division of assets.

A multimillion-dollar net worth isn’t required to benefit. Hammering out a prenuptial agreement — or for unmarried couples, a cohabitation agreement — can make sense for many regular folks, too, said Joslin Davis, president of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. “It requires people to think ahead,” she said.
Take the case of older couples and those who are remarrying. A prenup can protect your assets not just in divorce, but in death, said Davis, who is also a principal of Allman Spry Davis Leggett & Crumpler, P.A., in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Many jurisdictions prevent spouses from being disinherited, she said, so a court could easily void provisions in a will that leaves everything to your kids from a prior marriage. But a prenup could be worded to require your new spouse to waive their right to dissent or take an elective share in your estate.

For young couples, a prenup offers the chance to hash out divorce handling of issues like joint efforts to pay off one partner’s student-loan debt, or how a partner might be compensated for leaving the workforce to care for their children.

“This way, the two people can write their own deal at the beginning of the relationship, at a time when they are in love and looking out for each other,” said Dubin, who is also the author of “Prenups for Lovers: A Romantic Guide to Prenuptial Agreements.”

Already married? Postnups are generally harder to come by. “Sometimes, one party may be advised that they are better off without one,” said Davis. “The law already favors them.”

Read more related articles at:

A Tale of Two Celebrity Marriages and One Prenuptial Agreement

We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Prenup: Lessons for Johnny Depp

Click here to check out our On Demand Video about Estate Planning.

Click here for a short informative video from our own Attorney Bill O’Leary.

Estate Battle with Millions at Stake in New Orleans

Estate Battle with Millions at Stake in New Orleans

Jessica Fussell Brandt filed an eviction petition against her daughter, Julie Hartline, her son-in-law Darryl Hartline and two grandchildren, Alexis and Zachary Hartline. She is pitted against them in a legal fight over an estate valued at more than $300 million, reports nola.com in the article “In Ray Brandt estate battle, widow tries to evict family from Old Metairie compound.”

Before auto magnate Ray Brandt died at age 72 from pancreatic cancer, the entire family shared a compound that includes two mansions located next to the Metairie Country Club. Brandt has been trying to sell the property which belongs to the estate, as its executrix. The family members living there don’t want to move, even taking down “For Sale” signs from the lawn.

Her attempt to evict them comes after she won a case in her attempt to maintain control of her late husband’s estate, which includes a large number of auto dealerships and collision centers across Louisiana and Mississippi.

On January 25, a Jefferson Parish judge invalidated the last will and testament that Ray Brandt signed just weeks before his death and another last will drafted in 2015. The district judge ruled that both last wills contained a flaw in how they were notarized: neither notarization specified that Ray Brandt, the witnesses, and the notary were together when it was signed.

The decision is being appealed, but it appears to leave the fate of Brandt’s empire to a last will he made in 2010. Unlike the others, this last will places Jessica Brandt in full control of his estate and trust, including the auto dealerships, until her death.

Ultimately, Ray Brandt directed that her grandchildren, who he legally adopted as adults before he died, would split the estate’s assets.

Despite issuing a statement saying that Jessica was “pleased with the prospect beginning the healing process,” after the Jefferson Parish decision, the eviction filing revealed that Jessica’s attorneys sent an email urging family members to leave the property by January 31, 2021.

Jessica made a statement that her wish to evict family members was a result of the multiple citations issued by Jefferson Parish for continuing violations at the compound. The latest one was for a trailer and mud buggy parked in a driveway on a vacant lot. She also said that the family members own two other homes, one in Metairie and one in Fort Beauregard.

The compound where the family settled seven years ago is estimated to be worth more than $8 million.

The heart of the dispute pits Jessica Brandt against Archbishop Rummel High School principal Marc Milano, who Ray Brandt named as a trustee to oversee the auto group and the rest of the estate until Jessica Brandt dies. Milano has accused Jessica of taking money from the estate and trying to claim an ownership interest in the dealership. She sued him for defamation.

Now the grandchildren have filed their own legal action, challenging a petition to put Ray Brandt’s last will into effect. Their argument is the trust that Ray Brandt set up in 2015 makes it clear that he meant for Milano to oversee the assets.

This estate battle will no doubt keep the Jefferson Parish courts and newspapers busy for some time. It’s a lesson to keep your family’s business private, by ensuring that your estate plan is properly prepared and up to date.

Reference: nola.com (Feb. 3, 2021) “In Ray Brandt estate battle, widow tries to evict family from Old Metairie compound”

Read more related articles at:

Fate of Ray Brandt’s auto empire in doubt amid roiling family squabble over estate

‘Stop all of this!’ Ray Brandt’s widow bemoans the family battle over his massive estate

In Ray Brandt estate battle, widow tries to evict family from Old Metairie compound

Also, read one of our previous Blogs at:

Celebrity Estates: Battle Over Inheritances

Click here to check out our On Demand Video about Estate Planning.

Join Our eNews

Categories