Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

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

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Aretha Franklin's Sons Fighting Each Other Over Control of Singer's Estate

ArethaThe estate of the late diva Aretha Franklin continues to get convoluted and complex, now with the sons duking it out in court. Kecalf Franklin petitioned the court to remove the current personal representative, Aretha's niece Sabrina Owens, claiming that she is not keeping the singer's family up to date with the current status of the estate, and appoint him. Theodore "Teddy" White II, Aretha's son with her first husband, has asked the court to deny his brother's request and instead appoint him as co-personal representative along with Sabrina.

Kecalf claims that his cousin is keeping the heirs in the dark by failing to provide them any accounting or inventory of his mother’s property and assets. He also alleges that Owens has not communicating about the new business deals being negotiated, including the MGM biopic about Aretha's life, and any investigation into the possible forgery of some checks. He is requested that the judge appoint him as the successor and allow him to completely manage all aspects of Franklin’s business.

Owens has denies that she has kept any of the heirs out of the loop, and revealed that since police did not press charges over the alleged forged checks of her aunt, the estate is preparing a civil lawsuit. 

Another son of the diva, Edward Franklin, also filed docs backing Kecalf in the move to remove the current personal representative of the estate and put himself in charge.

See Ryan Naumann, Aretha Franklin's Sons Fighting Each Other Over Control of Singer's Estate, Yahoo, July 19, 2019.

Special thanks to Naomi Cahn (Harold H. Greene Professor of Law, George Washington University School of Law) for bringing this article to my attention.

https://lawprofessors.typepad.com/trusts_estates_prof/2019/07/aretha-franklins-sons-fighting-each-other-over-control-of-singers-estate.html

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