Larry King’s Estate Trouble
I’m Mike Hackard from Hackard Law. We work to be one of California’s leading trust and estate litigation law firms on behalf of beneficiaries.
Legendary newsman Larry King died in January of this year at the age of 89, and he managed to interview just about every celebrity, politician and anyone else of note over his 60-plus-year career. King’s personal life was also eventful – he was married eight times to seven women. He fathered five children.
With that kind of marital history, the chances of an estate fight rise dramatically. And sure enough, a month after his passing, Larry King’s seventh wife, Shawn Southwick-King, brought legal action in Los Angeles Superior Court to dispute King’s 2019 handwritten – or holographic – will.
King and Shawn’s marriage lasted longer than any of his previous marriages. Still this last marriage headed to the divorce courts in 2019. Two months after the 2019 divorce filing, King revoked his 2015 estate plan. The 2015 estate plan included Shawn. He changed the plan so that $2 million of his estate would be split evenly between his surviving three children.
Shawn claims the change was a product of undue influence. She claims that King’s eldest son, Larry Jr., unduly influenced his elderly father to change the plan. At the time of the change, King’s health was in steep decline. In fact, in March of 2019 King told reporters that he had suffered a stroke and had been in a coma for weeks. Will this will be overturned? We’ll have to wait and see what the court says.
We should note that the largest portion of King’s assets had been placed into revocable trusts. It’s estimated that the trust assets range between $50 and $144 million., not subject to the Will contest, The trust assets will likely pass without probate. Still, assets could be challenged in a trust contest.
Celebrity estates draw attention, interest and scrutiny. We regularly represent family members estate and trust disputes.
Call us at Hackard Law if you’d like to talk to us about your case: (916) 313-3030
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