Estate Planning: A Tale of Two Celebrities


Prince, the iconic American musical artist, died in 2016 and inexplicably left no last will & testament. This is despite having an enormous estate which is reportedly in the neighborhood of $300 million. Suffice it to say an epic legal/probate mess quickly ensued and Prince’s estate will most likely not be wrapped up anytime soon. Click here for an online article from Money for all of the gory probate details.

Another celebrity from my boyhood days in the 1980’s, Luke Perry, died unexpectedly from a stroke on March 4th. Despite his relatively young age of 52, it looks like he actually had a solid estate plan in place. Not only will this make it more likely that his estate (estimated at around $10 million) will be distributed and wound up in an orderly manner, but his advance medical directives presumably made the difficult situation at the hospital go much smoother than it may have otherwise. Click here for an online article from Forbes for the details.

Well, reading about such famous people from my childhood passing away makes me feel old. On the upside, this comparison of how two well-known celebrities planned ahead (or didn’t) provides us with a good illustration of why estate planning is so important, whether you’re famous or not.