Estate Planning Law

The Late Jimi Hendrix, a Cautionary Tale . . . for Estate Planning?

Known for his pioneering guitar prowess and electrifying performances, Jimi Hendrix changed the way we experienced the electric guitar.  Jimi Hendrix, only 27 when he died, influenced millions of guitar players around the world – including Eddie Van Halen who sadly died recently himself.

Jimi Hendrix’s guitar expertise is the stuff of legend.  His famous rendition of The Star-Spangled Banner on guitar only scratches the surface of what Jimi Hendrix was able to do on guitar, and what he contributed to the world of music.  Yet, Jimi Hendrix is also legendary for another reason having to do, with all things, estate planning.

Yes, that’s right, Jimi Hendrix also makes history as a legendary cautionary tale for all those who have yet to plan their own estates or draft a last will and testament.  So, in this article, we are going to discuss why the example of Jimi Hendrix is important for those thinking about doing their own estate planning.

If, after reading this article, you have additional questions about estate planning options, then we welcome you to give our Palm Beach Gardens attorneys a call at Doane & Doane, PA.   Our firm focuses on probate, estate, and tax matters.  We care deeply about our clients and want to make sure that they have the best, most up-to-date, information available.

At Doane & Doane, PA, we strive to give our clients the personalized legal counsel they need to appropriately take care of their taxes and other estate matters.  Contact the Palm Beach attorneys at Doane & Doane, PA for probate, and estate planning advice and services.  You can contact us today at 561-656-0200 or fill out our online contact form.

The Jimi Hendrix Estate Battle

Even though Jimi Hendrix died in 1970, his estate made about $6.6 million just last year.  In fact, it is estimated that Jimi Hendrix’s estate is worth $175 million.  Who is in control of that estate?  Not the person whom Jimi Hendrix wanted to have control.

You see, Jimi Hendrix died without a will.  So, even though Jimi was very close to his brother Leon growing up, and Leon was likely the person Jimi wanted his money to go to upon his death, his estate went to Jimi’s father when Jimi died.  That is because, when someone dies without a will, the laws of intestacy kick in.  If someone dies with no will and no children, then the next in line to receive the estate are a person’s parents.

Jimi’s father, Al, then was the person to inherit Jimi’s then $66 million estate.  Al, in turn, created a will that divided his estate between his children and grandchildren.  However, in his final years, Al changed his will, cutting out Leon from any inheritance.  Al died in 2002, and the Hendrix estate is now controlled by Jimi’s step-sister Janie.  There are now three cases in court related to Leon’s attempts to obtain some inheritance from Jimi Hendrix’s original estate.  Indeed, it can be tragic what wealth can do to a family.

What Lesson Does the Hendrix Estate Tell Us?

The lesson is – Don’t Wait to Draft Your Own Will.  If you are considering doing some estate planning – do not hesitate.  Without sounding too morbid, you should take care of how your estate should be distributed because you never know what could happen.

The thing that the Hendrix tale tells us is how unfortunate it is when your wishes for your estate do not come to fruition because you did not plan ahead and draft a will.  Suppose that you are estranged from your sister?  Suppose that you are afraid to give a huge inheritance to a child who is battling substance abuse issues.  Well, if you fail to indicate what your wishes are when it comes to the distribution of your estate, then by the laws of intestacy, your money might go to someone who you do not want to receive that money.

Taking the example of the estranged sister.  If you have no children and no parents, then the intestacy law indicates that your siblings are the next in line to receive your estate.  To make sure that does not happen you need to draft a will.  It really is the only sure-fire way to make sure that your assets are distributed as you desire. Otherwise, your sister will receive a windfall with your estate upon your passing.

If you ever feel like waiting a little longer to draft a will, then remember the plight of Jimi Hendrix’s estate.

Overall, it is advisable to have an experienced estate planning attorney help you with your last will and testament to ensure that you properly execute the will with the appropriate witnesses.  Florida has rather specific rules related to the execution of a will.  Thus, you want to make sure that it is properly executed so that a probate judge will accept its validity when the time comes.

Look to the Palm Beach Attorneys at Doane & Doane for Help with Your Estate Planning

Founded in 2003 by husband and wife legal team, Randell C. Doane and Rebecca G. Doane, Doane & Doane provides legal and financial services to families, individuals, and businesses throughout Southeast Florida.

Estate planning is about much more than just giving away property.  It is an act of love and kindness, with the ultimate goal of providing for the future financial security of your loved ones.  At Doane & Doane, our Wills and Trusts Attorneys West Palm Beach help people plan for retirement, make provisions for loved ones, figure out future child support, and minimize tax liability.  Experienced wills and trusts attorneys know which tools to use to get the best results for their clients.  Our lawyers can help you determine which tools are best suited to your specific circumstances.

When it comes to probate matters, such as the formal administration of an estate, Florida fiduciaries seek the assistance of the Palm Beach attorneys at Doane & Doane, P.A. to administer and manage their trusts and estates.  Notably, the founding partners of Doane & Doane are board-certified West Palm Beach Probate Attorneys.  With the additional advantage of certified public accountancy in their backgrounds, they present a unique combination of skills and experience which enables them to effectively settle, administer, and manage clients’ trust and estates.

Call us at Doane & Doane, P.A. to help you if you are faced with a probate matter, or if you would like estate planning services in Florida.  You can reach us at 561-656-0200.  Call us today.