The Minnesota judge hearing the Prince estate case has rejected most of the claims brought by people to have themselves declared to be the singer’s heirs.
The stakes in the Prince estate case are very high. Because he did not have an estate plan, anyone who is determined to be one of his closest living relatives stands to inherit a fortune … even after approximately half of the value of the estate is reduced by state and federal estate taxes.
This has led many people to file claims with the court claiming they are closely related to Prince. Many of those claims were very weak.
For example, one person claimed that someone told him that his mother named him after Prince and thus he filed a claim to be the musician’s son.
In a single decision, the judge overseeing the case has dismissed most of the claims of those claiming to be Prince’s heir as CNN reports in “Prince's possible heirs narrowed down to six.”
A total of 29 claims were dismissed including 18 claims to be the late musician’s child.
The ruling leaves six claims to be related to Prince open. They include a possible sibling, three half-siblings, a niece and a grandniece. The remaining claimants will undergo DNA testing to see if their relation to Prince can be verified.
Determining who Prince’s heirs are is just the first step in settling his estate. After this step is completed, it will still need to be determined exactly how the estate should be divided between the heirs, who will be in control of Prince’s musical legacy and how the estate will pay the estate tax bills.
Most of the decisions that will have to be made could have been avoided if Prince had an estate plan, even a very simple one at that.
Reference: CNN (July 29, 2016) “Prince's possible heirs narrowed down to six.”
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