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Bobbi Kristina Brown & the Fight for the Houston Estate

Bobbi Kristina Whitney Houston.jpg

Bobbi Kristina Brown and Whitney Houston sing a duet together in 2009. Photo: hollywoodtake.com

Bobbi Kristina Brown, daughter of the late singer-diva Whitney Houston, passed away at age 22 after six months in a coma. She had been found face-down and unresponsive in a bathtub in January, tragically the same way her mother had died in 2012. Now there's millions of dollars at stake, and you can bet that the Whitney Houston estate will become the object of an upcoming round of court battles.

In fact, litigation is already underway - the trustee for Bobbi Kristina, an attorney appointed by the court when the former was already in a coma, has filed a lawsuit against boyfriend Nick Gordon. The allegations in the complaint are grave: Gordon is accused not only of misappropriating the funds from Bobbi Kristina's trust (including at least $11,000 while she was already unconscious), but also committing domestic violence against her, which is said to be the ultimate cause of her death. We'll have to see what evidence comes forth to support these assertions, since it's already well known that both Nick Gordon and Bobbi Kristina Brown, who claimed to be married, were heavily abusing alcohol and drugs.

After her mother's death, Bobbi Kristina became the sole beneficiary of a spendthrift trust, estimated by media to amount to around $20 million. She would receive 10% on her 21st birthday, approximately another $3 million on at 25, and the remainder of the Houston fortune at age 30. Since Gordon claims to be Bobbi Kristina's "husband," he would be entitled to a share of the funds she had received, provided he can prove it with official documents. Yet much, if not all, of the money previously allotted to her was likely devoted to maintaining life support after she lapsed into a coma.

As it stands, Whitney Houston's two brothers and mother are in line to inherit the  singer's estate after the untimely death of Bobbi Kristina. Houston's ex-husband Bobby was automatically excluded from the will after the two's divorce in 2007. As Forbes notes, she never composed a living trust after drafting her will in 1993, which would have been a reasonable step to take in securing the future for loved ones. What's the overall lesson in this entire sad affair? Fame and fortune, despite the seeming glamour, can be downright ruinous and even deadly without a mature, responsible approach. Don't just protect your children financially - protect them morally and spiritually, as well.

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