Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Inheritance Battle Over Bert Stern Estate


Late celebrity photographer Bert Stern is famous for snapping provocative photos of Marilyn Monroe shortly before her death as well as shots of Elizabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn, and Truman Capote.  His three adult children and much-younger wife are now in Manhattan Surrogate’s Court fighting over his $10 million fortune.

The dispute centers around two wills: one signed in 1997 which divides his estate between his children and a foundation and the other signed in 2010 which pours all his assets into a private trust controlled by wife, Shannah Laumeister.  Stern’s children are demanding to examine the attorney who wrote the 2010 will and its witnesses. 

Stern died a few months ago at age 83.  Laumeister, 44, secretly married Stern in 2009.  

See Julia Marsh, Marilyn Photog’s Inheritance Fight, New York Post, Sept. 23, 2013.


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