The world tragically lost a Blue’s icon recently and it looks like the families troubles are continuing in probate court. The four daughters of the late musical icon BB King, Patty King, Karen Williams, Rita Washington and Barbara Winfree, have had their lawyer file new legal documents in probate court, indicating that there is another will by their father who in his 2007 will named his long-time business manager, LaVerne Toney, as the sole executor of the estate. Riletta Mitchell, another daughter was listed second, but she died in September of last year.
Apparently, BB King’s daughters have been at odds with LaVerne Toney and Myron Johnson, another personal aide for months. They claim that Toney misappropriated funds and mistreated BB King before his death, and also claim King had been poisoned. According to news sources, in the legal papers, the daughters only accuse Toney of being unqualified to be the executor of BB King’s estate.
BB King’s daughters also allege that Toney denied King the proper medical care he needed and also changed the locks on his home so that when the BB King died on May 14th, he had no family and friends with him. A lawyer representing Toney and the estate dismisses the claims and states that they are completely ludicrous’ and ‘unsubstantiated by any true facts’. These new accusations come before the daughters are scheduled to appear in court for a hearing regarding BB King’s will.
So what happens if an original Will is Lost or destroyed in Tennessee? it is important to keep the original will because it is difficult to prove the existence of a lost or destroyed will in Tennessee. In order to prove that a will has been lost or destroyed, a person must establish the following:
• the testator made and executed a valid will in accordance with the forms of law
• the substance and contents of the will
• that the will had not been revoked and is lost or destroyed or cannot be found after a due and proper search.
• These elements, which are imposed to prevent fraud, must be proved by “clear, cogent and convincing proof.
If you need help proving the existence of a lost or destroyed will or if you or someone you care about has questions or concerns about a will or estate planning, you should contact one of our experienced and compassionate estate planning and probate attorneys at the Higgins Firm. We care about our clients and will answer any questions or concerns you may have. We will also help you through the probate court process that we understand can be complex and confusing. We will also be happy to discuss with your estate planning options so that you can make the best informed decision to protect and take care of your loved ones after you pass away.
Remember, it is important for you to have a will so that after you are gone, your loved ones and those you care about will know how to divide up your assets, property and other items. If you do not have a will before you die, this can cause family members to have a longer time in probate court trying to determine who gets what and often times the court will make these final decisions. If you or someone you love needs help in drafting a will or you need help with a will after someone has passed away, you should speak to one of our estate planning and probate lawyers with the Higgins Firm. We will answer any questions you may have and help you decide on the best estate planning for your situation.
Please contact us today online or by calling 800.705.2121 to discuss your legal options.