Larry King had a will. Well, Larry King wrote a will. It said:
‘This is my Last Will & Testament. It should replace all previous writings. In the event of my death, any day after the above date I want 100% of my funds to be divided equally among my children Andy, Chaia, Larry Jr., Chance & Cannon.’
While some states do legally acknowledge a handwritten will, in this particular case—and in most cases where an individual takes it upon themselves to tackle a task that they have no business tackling—there was a lot of information missing.
For example, Chaia and Andy—King’s oldest children—both died before King (but after he wrote his “will”). Does their inheritance, then, get divvied up among the remaining living children? Or should it go to their surviving spouses, or children?
Another question: who will execute the estate? His wife, who he was in the process of divorcing when he died, was named executor in an earlier legal document. However, she is now insisting that King’s handwritten letter is not legally binding, and that he was not mentally well enough to make legal decisions at that time, anyway. In addition to King’s almost-ex trying to assume the role of executor, his oldest son says that he should be responsible for executing the estate…but there are no legal documents to support his claims.
Estate planning is incredibly nuanced. Unless you are a qualified estate attorney, there are probably dozens of situations that you wouldn’t even think to plan for, never mind a laundry list of common considerations that may not seem so obvious to you. Had King worked with an estate attorney, he would have been guided through the process of naming an executor, planning for contingencies, and making other decisions that would have prevented a major family feud.
Don’t make the same mistake as Larry King. After you pass away, give your family the gift of being able to celebrate your life…without fighting over your money, or questioning who should be doing what in closing out your debts and distributing your assets.
Caress Law, PC is here to help you navigate the nuanced process of estate planning. We will ensure you ask the right questions, and cover your bases completely. You’ll gain peace of mind knowing that you, your family, and your assets will be protected now, and in the future. Contact us today using the brief form below.