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author: marcen27 from Glasgow, UK In an unprecedented turn of events, Britney Spears took the stand yesterday in LA Probate Court to tell the Judge exactly how she felt about being conserved. Thirteen years into her Conservatorship, Britney elaborated on what she believes has been an “abusive” situation that has “traumatized” her. Prior to yesterday,...
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Michael Jackson’s Estate claimed Jackson’s name and image were valueless upon his death. The IRS strongly disagreed. Can you imagine a world in which pop icon Michael Jackson’s name and image truly have no value?? That is the question at the heart of a recent federal tax court order that clocked in at almost 300...
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On January 23, 2021, Lawrence Zieger died.  Known globally as Larry King, he left behind 8 marriages to 7 different women (he married his 3rd wife twice).  His kids ranged in age from 65-20.  Sadly, two of them pre-deceased him.  From an estate perspective, this is ripe for fighting and litigation.   Almost immediately, his...
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Tom Girardi is a famous LA attorney, who, before late last year was perhaps best known for his role in the real life “Erin Brockovich” story. He is also known to many as the husband of “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” star Erika Girardi. More recently, however, Mr. Girardi has become known for the massive...
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Originally published 12/21/20, updated 2/12/21 2020 was a difficult year for Britney Spears, and not because of the pandemic. If you haven’t seen the headlines yet – Britney’s Conservatorship was been in Court multiple times in 2020 and has undergone major changes. The most recent power struggle over Britney took place on February 11th of...
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Chadwick Boseman was a star beloved by many, and his tragic death at the age of 43 has been mourned around the world. Sadly, he battled colon cancer for nearly four years before eventually succumbing to it. During this time, Boseman performed in the role that would catapult his celebrity status to ultra famous –...
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Tiger King!  Netflix’s hottest new show right now that everybody is streaming!  On March 20, 2020, Netflix put out a new show that discusses large cat zoos in America.  In episode 3, they discuss Carole Baskin, who runs Big Cat Rescue in Florida, in depth.     The whole storyline in episode 3 is that Carole...
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Allegations of “gross mismanagement” by Ms. Franklin’s niece and her attorney were heard in the Michigan Courts this week. Allegations include excessive legal and Administrator fees, improper management of high value assets, failure to properly account for estate funds, and lack of communication with the heirs and beneficiaries. Because this is Aretha Franklin’s estate, “excessive...
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Recently, sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein was found dead, allegedly by suicide.  A number of people have raised questions what this means for his estate and the victims.  At this time, there are more questions than answers.  This is due to the extreme complexity of Epstein’s estate.  It would be spread out over at least three...
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Aretha Franklin was no doubt one of the greatest singers of our time. With her vast estate back in probate court last week, I wanted to take the chance to talk about some of the issues that have arisen thus far. I’ll address each in turn in terms of how they work in California probate...
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Is Britney ready to take on her life without a conservatorship?  The biggest pop star of the millennium is back in the headlines after canceling her return to Las Vegas for her new show Britney: Domination and announcing an indefinite work hiatus. She checked into a mental health facility for a few weeks and rumors...
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The New York Times recently took the opportunity to highlight this question in an article based on the hotly litigated estate of French celebrity Johnny Hallyday. The Hallyday family is currently fighting over whether or not his estate should pass according to French probate law or California probate law. California allows freedom to distribute assets...
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“Mad, bad and dangerous to know. That was him and that was me.”  Speaking about himself and Lord Byron, Dylan McKay was the coolest guy at West Beverly High School and teen idol for an entire generation of teenagers in the 90’s.  Played by actor Luke Perry in the long-running show Beverly Hills, 90210, his...
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When Green Book was released and subsequently won the Oscar for Best Picture, Don Shirley’s story finally became widely known to the public.  But who really knew Don Shirley? Was it his family, who claimed the movie was a “symphony of lies”, or was it the sole heir and executor of his estate, a Dutch...
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The Conservatorship of celebrity Amanda Bynes has been in and out of the California probate courts since 2013. Recently, Bynes’ Conservatorship of the Person was extended, while the Conservatorship of the Estate was terminated. Here’s a brief synopsis of how her Conservatorship has played out, and what we can learn from her experience. Amanda Bynes...
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Vanity Fair recently published a new article, “It is Not a Coincidence: With 75 million on the line, the Redstone Family declares Sumner incompetent.” If you’re unfamiliar, Sumner Redstone is the Hollywood Mogul billionaire at the helm of a media empire that includes CBS and Viacom. For the past several years, Sumner has been at...
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Unlike famous singers Aretha Franklin and Prince, who died without a will or trust, rapper Mac Miller planned ahead for his demise. And he did this at the tender age of 21 – perhaps foreseeing his death at just 26 years of age on September 7th of this year. Consequently, his fortune will likely be...
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As you likely already know, the great Aretha Franklin, known as the Queen of Soul, passed away on August 16th, 2018 at her home in Detroit, Michigan. Her greatest hits – “Respect”, “A Natural Woman”, “Chain of Fools”, defined her as a modern woman and brought the fervor of gospel music to secular songs. With...
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The children of Buzz Aldrin, former astronaut, are trying to obtain guardianship over him in a Florida court – and he’s fighting back. According to the Wall Street Journal, Andrew and Janice Aldrin say their father is in “cognitive decline” and a guardianship is necessary. Aldrin and his attorneys responded with a lawsuit accusing son...
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The Hollywood Reporter notes that despite Jurassic World’s box office success, the newest installment “has trouble finding something to say beyond what ‘Jurassic Park’ already did 25 years ago.” I beg to differ. Jurassic World highlights some important estate planning issues in a fun filled, action packed, dinosaur laden 90 minutes. SPOILER ALERT! Ok, so...
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David Cassidy, known as Keith Partridge in the popular show The Partridge Family and a teen heartthrob in the 1970s, died of organ failure in Fort Lauderdale on November 21, 2017 at the age of 67. He had been hospitalized with liver and kidney failure the week prior to his death and passed away surrounded...
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Famed Playboy (Owner) and Celebrity Hugh Hefner passed away on September 27th at the age of 91.  With an estimated net worth of $50 million at the time of his death, a young wife, multiple ex-wives and ex-girlfriends, and four children to boot, who will end up with Hugh Hefner’s fortune? His last will and testament,...
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Chapter Two continues the unhappy saga of the troubles of Tom Clancy’s estate. The main players in this drama are the two wives of Tom Clancy; his first wife, Wanda King, who was married to him for 30 years, and his second wife and widow, Alexandra Clancy, married to him for 14 years. The drama...
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For those of you who are fans – or at least avid listeners to the hit podcast “S-Town,” you may be left with a few questions: What happened to Mary Grace? Where is the gold??Did Cousin Rita have something to gain?What happened to all those dogs? I can’t answer these questions definitively, but a recent examination...
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The trust battle between the Buss siblings over control of the L.A. Lakers has ended. Jeannie Buss and her brothers, Jim and Johnny, reached with an agreement for Jeannie to remain as controlling owner for as long as the family owns the famed basketball team. On February 21  Jeannie Buss, the L.A. Lakers president and...
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Reports indicate that the Administrator of Bobbi Kristina Brown’s massive estate abruptly quit amidst the heated family drama since Brown’s death. Bobbi Kristina Brown, daughter of Whitney Houston and Bobby Brown, died after being in a coma for several months after a presumed drug overdose nearly two years ago. Her estate, and the ensuing legal...
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For most families, setting up a trust to hold one’s property or bank accounts is a prudent step. But when your assets are in the hundreds of millions, setting up a trust (or trusts) is seldom simply an item on your to-do list – it’s a must.  As many of you already know, Fox News...
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WHITNEY HOUSTON, FLORENCE GRIFFITH JOYNER, HEATH LEDGER Earlier this year I wrote about the Celebrity Estate Planning Tragedies of Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Marlon Brando, Howard Hughes, James Brown, and James Gandolfini. Recent events and a few discoveries on my part have compelled me to add to that list of Celebrity Estate Planning Tragedies – and...
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Without a Will or Trust, the state gets to decide who will get your assets. In addition, the chances of a family fight are drastically increased. Even a basic, handwritten will can go a long way – and there’s only a few requirements to make it legally valid. So why do so many Americans put off...
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As many Star Trek fans may already know, 27 year old actor Anton Yelchin, known as “ Chekov” to fans, died in a freak car accident on June 19th when he was crushed by his Jeep Cherokee in the driveway of his Studio City home. Last Friday, Court records revealed he had no will or...
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