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Estate Battles of the Rich and Famous

BBC News takes a look at some of the more dramatic feuds that have taken place over the wills and legacies of well-known figures throughout the decades.

So many feuds have been fought over the estates and even the bodies of the wealthy and famous that serious dedication to the topic is required to know everything that has happened.

In case you might have missed any famous cases, the BBC News recently published a helpful rundown of some of the larger cases in a recent article titled "The who's who of battles for wills, bodies and legacies."

The celebrities discussed include:

  • Michael Jackson - His estate has been embroiled with feuds over the validity of his will and the guardianship of his children.
  • Leona Helmsley - Her estate included a bizarre battle over how much money she left to her dog.
  • Ted Williams - After his death a fight ensued about whether or not his remains should be cryogenically frozen.
  • Nelson Mandela - He left behind a fortune that is expected to be the subject of a feud.
  • Nina Wang - Once Asia's richest woman, Wang's lover laid claim to her estate. However, the Hong Kong courts decided the fortune should be given to charity.
  • Lilane Bettencourt - Although she is still alive, the battle over the L'OrĂ©al heiress' fortune has already reached the French Presidency.

While you may not be a "celebrity," you can avoid many pitfalls that are common to every estate by making proper plans with an experienced estate planning attorney.

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