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Heirs and beneficiaries: No will often leads to legal problems

Soul music fans in Illinois and throughout the world are mourning the recent passing of Aretha Franklin. Her music topped the charts for years and continues to touch the hearts of millions. Franklin died at age 76, after battling pancreatic cancer. As often happens in situations where people do not execute last wills before they die, Franklin's potential heirs and beneficiaries may face complications.

Franklin, known affectionately by her fans as the Queen of Soul, was the mother of four sons. She was also said to have been involved in an on-again-off-again relationship with one particular man. The 71-year-old man worked as a firefighter and is known for his long-term friendship with the superstar.

Franklin's sons are split as to whether her special friend should receive some of her assets. Two of the men agree that it seems fair and acceptable that he would. The other two say they have never trusted the man's intentions toward their mother and do not want him to get a piece of the pie. Since Franklin never executed a last will and testament, it could take some time to resolve the issue. 

Heirs and beneficiaries in Illinois who may currently be facing similar problems may want to seek legal guidance before making any final decisions. A Michigan court will no doubt appoint an estate administrator to distribute Franklin's assets according to the laws of intestacy, under court supervision. There are experienced estate administration attorneys who are experienced at providing guidance and support to families facing such situations.

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