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By Jason Carrozza

Hi Everyone,

Happy Wednesday. Aretha Franklin passed away last Thursday at age of 76 after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. She was an American music icon and it is estimated that her estate is worth approximately $80 Million. She was unmarried, leaves behind four children and four grandchildren, and the craziest part, she has no estate plan.

Franklin’s entertainment attorney claims he attempted to have her sign a will and a trust for years, and she delayed the matter. Even throughout her bout with cancer she failed to put her trust into place. Now, the estate will be divided amongst her children equally. The judge will have no choice but to ascertain the value of her estate and make sure that there is an equal division between her children. The complications arise with the number of assets, royalties, and future fortune. Moreover, all of her finances will become a part of the public record. Now, Franklin’s family is stuck dealing with the courts and this process is going to take quite a bit of time and money.

No, you may not be Aretha Franklin, and you may not be worth $80 million dollars, but if you want to make sure that you choose where you assets are going and who is going to manage that process, then it’s a necessity to have a proper estate plan in place. You or the courts, the choice if yours. Please contact us today is you want to be one in charge.

About the Author
Jason M. Carrozza is a partner and founder of Family Legal Partners, P.C., previously owning Carrozza Law Office, P.C., which focused on estate planning, probate administration, and business formation. He was recognized as a Massachusetts Rising Star by New England Super Lawyers and Boston Magazine in 2014, 2015, and 2016, an honor given to no more than 5% of attorneys in the state. Graduating magna cum laude from New England Law and ranked 3rd in his class, Jason completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Tampa. He gained experience in civil litigation, divorce, corporate, and insurance defense law firms before opening his practice in 2004. Jason is admitted to practice before the Massachusetts Courts, is a trained family law mediator, and a member of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation. He has volunteered for pro bono panels with Senior Partners For Justice, South Middlesex Legal Services, and the New Center for Legal Advocacy. Dedicated to his community, he has served in various leadership roles including vice president of the Bellingham Business Association and Master of Excelsior Lodge of Massachusetts Freemasons. He teaches Estate Planning Basics at the Tri County Continuing Adult Education program and speaks at estate planning seminars throughout the year. An avid baseball fan and history enthusiast, Jason enjoys outdoor activities and spending time with his family. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife, Katrina, and their children, Zachary and Madelyn.