Recurring News Story: Celebrity dies without a will
Why do I keep reminding you to get your important information together in case of an emergency? Because we don’t know when we will need it, and it’s not good to be unprepared.
When the musician and businessman Prince died some months ago, it came out that he left no will, and did not have a written estate plan. So his huge estate will go to probate.
Unfortunately, the same happens to too many people who are not as wealthy or well-known. And don’t think you don’t have a large enough estate for it to matter. It does, and it’s not just about the money.
So what happens in that situation?
- The matter goes to court for anyone and everyone to see the person’s personal affairs
- Impersonal parties will make decisions that could have been personal choices
- The process is expensive, and the courts take their fees
- It’s on the government’s timetable, not necessarily helpful for those who have an interest in (and perhaps a need for) the proceeds.
- Taxes eat into the estate, which could have been protected with some planning
- The door is open to contention among heirs and/or beneficiaries
- Life gets much more complicated for those involved
- Often people are left unsure if all assets have been found. That’s why there are so many notices for unclaimed funds.
- Likely more unintended consequences
More celebrities who died intestate: Pablo Picasso, Jimi Hendrix, Sonny Bono, Steig Larson, Howard Hughes, Steve McNair, Bob Marley and others.
They all probably thought they had more time, and could do it later.
Do yourself and those you care about a favor. Get your important papers organized and accessible for those who need them.
Here’s the help you need: Click here for My Free Webinars with Checklist