Posts tagged "will contest"

Will dispute over Kinkade estate settled outside court

The legal dispute over the $60 million estate of Thomas Kinkade, "Painter of Light," has reportedly been settled, just in time for Christmas. As our readers may already know, Kinkade died back in April after accidentally overdosing on alcohol and Valium. We wrote about the estate dispute back in July, noting that Kinkade's estranged wife of 30 years and his girlfriend of 18 months had been engaged in a dispute involving competing wills. The complicated relationship between Kinkade, his wife and his girlfriend made matters even stickier.

Jackson estate wins victory in copyright case, but will challenge continues

Last Friday, the estate of Michael Jackson won a victory when a federal judge ruled that a memorabilia dealer working with Katherine Jackson violated copyrights owned by the estate and cannot use intellectual property of the estate. At issue is material from the movie "This is it," Jackson's song "Destiny," and material from man anniversary release DVD of "Thriller."

How to reduce the probability of a will contest, P.2

In our previous post, we began looking at various strategies and approaches to estate planning that will help reduce the likelihood of a will contest later on down the road. As we noted, will contests typically involve disgruntled family members or close friends who feel they've the testator's will treats them unjustly or inequitably.

How to reduce the probability of a will contest, P.1

Will contests, as many of our readers know, are lawsuits brought in probate court to challenge the validity of a Last Will and Testament. Will contests like the current one over the estate of the famous painter Thomas Kinkade are not completely unavoidable. With good planning and a little foresight, the probability that one's estate will be plagued with a will contest can be reduced, even if not eliminated.

Thomas Kinkade estate subject of dispute between his longtime wife, girlfriend

Our readers may have already heard about the death of Thomas Kinkade, the famous "Painter of Light," back in April. At present, a will contest over Kinkade's estate is going on between the woman who was his wife of 30 years and his girlfriend of 18 months. Kinkade and his wife were estranged at the time of his death, she having filed for divorce in 2010.

Estate of late copper heiress subject of two separate legal challenges

The public administrator in charge of winding down the estate of the late copper heiress Huguette Clark recently petitioned a New York probate court to order her caretakers to return millions of dollars in gifts. According to the administrator, the recipients took advantage of Clark's feebleness and manipulated her into making those gifts.

Estate of NY socialite, philanthropist sees end to will contest

Our Alpharetta readers may or may not have heard of New York socialite and philanthropist Brooke Astor. Astor is known for her family ties to old American money and her charitable donations. Astor died in 2007 at the age of 105. Since her death, her estate has been troubled by a dispute over provisions in her estate planning documents under which she left millions to New York charities.

FBI catches man who allegedly swindled nuns into paying "probate costs"

On Monday, the FBI captured a man who has been charged with 14 federal fraud counts connected to a scam in which he allegedly defrauded a number of individuals. Among the victims in the scam were 24 members of the Dominican Sisters of the Rosary of Fatima.

Family of wealthy copper heiress challenges validity of will

The possibility of a will contest is one thing proper estate planning is supposed to eliminate, or at least greatly reduce. Grounds on which will contests are waged generally focus on accusations that the person who left the will lacked testamentary capacity, was operating under a "insane delusion" at the time the will was established, or that somebody asserted undue influence or fraud upon him or her. Unfortunately, even good planning cannot reduce all possibility of a will contest.

The details of the Georgia Supreme Court Melican decision

In our previous post we discussed the background events which spurred a longstanding probate battle that was recently resolved by the Georgia Supreme Court. The court ruled that Anne Melican is entitled to proceeds from the sale of a condominium previously owned by the Marietta millionaire car dealer with whom she had a 10-year affair.

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