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The Value of A Will: What Can We Learn from Prince?


Last week, we all heard the devastating news of a cultural and musical icon’s passing. A Minnesota native, Prince Rogers Nelson, who became known as “Prince”, inspired young artists and touched the lives of generations with his decades of music. It seems unfathomable that a celebrity, who had a net worth of over $300,000,000, wouldn’t have an estate plan in place. According to all sources close to Prince, he did not have a will at the time of his death.

Unfortunately, he is not alone in this matter. It is estimated that 1 in 6 Americans fail to create a will before dying. This situation can be very difficult for families to endure, as the assets of the deceased may be distributed against their wishes.

When Prince passed away, he was unmarried with no living children. Therefore, Minnesota intestacy laws provide that his estate would be distributed among his one sister and five half-siblings. Currently, his estate is being managed by a trust company as no personal representative has been appointed and he has substantial assets that will need protection.

When one passes away, his or her family could be left dealing with hefty estate taxes. A life insurance policy and an irrevocable insurance trust will help alleviate the weight of estate taxes. To receive a tax break, one may choose to donate a large portion of his or her estate to a charity. A devout member of the Jehovah’s Witness faith, Prince’s close friends and family believe that he would have wanted to contribute a large portion of his estate to the church.

It is understandable that people do not want to think about their death, although the presence of a will at the time of one’s death cannot be undervalued. Once a will has been executed, it is wise to have it reviewed and perhaps updated every 3 to 5 years to reflect any life changes.

To start the Estate Planning process with an experienced attorney, please call Kira Doyle Law today at 727-537-6818. We look forward to speaking with you.