A Commitment

to Each Client.

Heirs of Aretha Franklin continue to fight over her estate

The judge overseeing litigation regarding late soul music superstar Aretha Franklin’s estate has ordered court supervision of the administration of the estate. Franklin’s heirs, namely, one of her four sons, is challenging the appointment of the late singer’s niece as estate representative. The situation has sparked opposition between the brothers.

Franklin’s estate is reportedly worth approximately $80 million. However, the former Queen of Soul’s assets have the potential to generate hundreds of millions more down the line. The son has requested that his cousin be removed as estate representative, asking that he be appointed in her stead. 

The administration of Franklin’s estate has proved complicated as three handwritten wills have been discovered since her passing. One of her sons has petitioned the court to request a handwriting analysis of his mother’s writing to determine whether she, in fact, wrote the wills in question. If so, then the wills make it clear that Franklin wished a larger share of her estate be earmarked for her eldest son’s special needs with the remaining assets divided equally among her other three sons.

One of Franklin’s heirs has supported his cousin’s appointment as estate representative but has asked the judge to name him co-administrator. There may be Illinois residents currently facing similar, complex estate administration problems. A key factor to obtaining swift and fair solutions to such problems is often reliance on experienced legal guidance from an attorney well-versed in probate litigation issues. Estate administration laws vary by state and complex issues such as those regarding this case are much easier to resolve when experienced attorneys are involved in the proceedings.

FindLaw Network
LCA Litigation Counsel of America Fellow
ACTEC The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel
My Estate and Legacy Planner