When attorneys pursue an estate or trust case on behalf of their client, one of the key factors in the litigation process is discovery, whereby documents and other evidence are subject to exposure for their possible use in court. All kinds of records are useful - estate, medical, financial, and those of law enforcement.
What happens when, upon a parent's death, the trust you've been counting on comes up empty, leaving you zilch? Such is the situation in which the children of Pennsylvania billionaire Richard Mellon Scaife have found themselves. Jennie and David Scaife are now set for a court battle to find out where that money went and whether they can successfully challenge the remainder of their father's vast estate for the purposes of recovery.
When tabloid magazines proclaim that the stars are "just like us," they have a point. After all, when they die some celebrities leave behind estate disputes - often nastier and on a larger scale. Famed Hollywood actor Tony Curtis is a case in point. Curtis, who died at age 85 in 2010, was a screen legend who lived the Hollywood life, a circumstance that added up to six marriages and five children. His last wife and widow, Jill Vandenberg Curtis, was 42 years his junior (they married in 1998 when she was 31 and he was 73).
In matters of estate litigation, disputes between parties to a will often become tangled and contentious. With the case of the James Brown estate, however, we can safely assert that the scale and acrimony involved are several orders of magnitude greater than your run-of-the-mill will contest.