J. Kelly Kennedy, Attorney/CPA, PLLC

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Attorney and CPA

The saga over Prince's estate and assets carries on

Last week's post briefly discussed the death of megastar Prince Rogers Nelson, and how he did not have a will at the time of his death. Since his death on April 21, a number of people have claimed to be potential heirs to Prince's vast estate. The two latest people to claim lineage to Prince say that they are the children of his half-brother.

In addition to those claims, a woman filed a sworn statement saying that she is Prince's only living child. However, a 39-year-old man also claims that he is Prince's child; his mother stated that she had sex with Prince in 1976. Furthermore, a different woman claimed that she had an 11-year-old child with Prince's deceased son, and thus the child should be entitled to a distribution from Prince's estate.

The administrator for Prince's estate filed a proposal with the probate court stating that it might ask any supposed heirs to submit blood or genetic tests to prove that they are related to the late artist.

When a person dies without a will in Florida, state law provides special rules -- called intestate laws -- that govern exactly how the person's assets are to be legally distributed. While the laws are designed to pass the deceased person's money and property to living family members, the distribution plan may not end up being anything like what the person would have wanted. This is one of the reasons why people who have any substantial assets put their wishes to paper in a legally enforceable will.

Prince was an icon and his music genius will undoubtedly stand the test of time. But the fight over his multi-million dollar fortune will likely be far less appealing than any of his musical works. People in Winter Haven and Lakeland could avoid this problem by creating a will.

Source: The Economic Times, "Now, more potential Prince heirs come forward," May 20, 2016

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