10 famous faces who died without making a Will

Writing a Will is incredibly important and is the only way you can make sure your wishes are carried out and your loved ones provided for. Below are a list of celebrities who died intestate (with no will) which meant their assets were distributed according to the law rather than their wishes:

Rik Mayall

The actor and comedian died suddenly and unexpectedly at the age of 56 in 2014. Because he didn’t have a valid Will in place, his £1.2m estate may be liable for taxes that could have been avoided.

Barry White

When the singer-songwriter died aged 58 in 2003 he had a partner although he was still married to his estranged second wife. His partner, widow, first wife and children were left quarrelling over his multi-million dollar fortune.

Heath Ledger

Film star Heath Ledger died aged 28 in 2008. Although Heath had a valid Will, it hadn’t been updated for nearly five years, meaning his small daughter wasn’t included.

Jill Dando

The 37-year old television presenter, whose murder in 1999 shocked the nation, didn’t have a Will in place. Therefore, although Ms Dando was engaged to be married, her father was entitled to the total value of her estate.

Abraham Lincoln

The 16th President of the United States hadn’t made a Will when he was assassinated in 1865 – despite having worked as lawyer.

Bob Marley

When the reggae superstar died aged 36 in 1981, he left a multi-million dollar estate but no Will. Lengthy and expensive legal battles ensued.

Pablo Picasso

The world-renowned artist hadn’t made a Will when he died at the age of 91 in 1973. It took six years and cost millions of dollars to settle his estate.

Howard Hughes

It seemed that the eccentric billionaire had made a Will when he died at the age of 70 in 1976. However, the Will was later declared a forgery in court and his estate was divided amongst his 22 cousins.

Amy Winehouse

When the singer-songwriter died intestate at the age of 27 in 2011, her entire estate – worth nearly £3m – passed to her parents.

Steig Larsson

The Swedish author died in 2004 at the age of fifty. He was unmarried but had lived with his partner for three decades. However, because he didn’t have a valid Will, a court gave his estate to his father and brother.

Christian Legacy Week is a perfect opportunity to start thinking about writing a Will. Check out our page on ‘Making your Will’:

Posted by Christian Legacy on October 22, 2015 1:00 PM

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