This month’s Hoosier Estate Planning blog posts are focused on celebrities who made estate planning mistakes. (Since these stories have been covered in the media – in contrast to the strict confidentiality in which Geyer & Associates’ clients’ estate planning conversations are held – they make good “textbooks” on mistakes to avoid. Interestingly enough, Michael Jackson is an example of someone who “did it right” when it came to organizing his affairs…. 
“People often have multiple bank accounts, investment accounts, insurance policies, and assets, and U.S.News. “For someone who runs a business, that task gets even more complicated,” she adds. Michael Jackson WAS his own family business, Palmer says. He had memorabilia, rights to Beatles’ songs, and royalties to albums, in addition to all his own financial and personal assets.

Yet, despite all this complexity, (and despite being a man who lived so controversial a life), says Jane Bennet Clark in Kiplinger’s, Michael Jackson did something surprisingly sensible before his death – he set up a smart estate plan:

that can complicate matters for those trying to make sense of an estate,” says Kimberly Palmer, writing in

  •  He transferred his property, including cars, bank accounts, and real estate it the Michael Jackson Family Trust, maintaining control as trustee.
  • He set up his will to “pour over”, so that any property remaining outside the trust at his death would be added to the trust.
  • He created a legal framework for naming a guardian for his children, along with a backup guardian.
  • He named an attorney and a business executive as co-executors of his well and co-trustees of the trust (Despite a challenge by a family member, Jackson’s wishes were upheld by the court).

The attorneys of Rebecca W. Geyer & Associates, PC are dedicated to providing in-depth counseling to individuals and families to accomplish practical estate planning solutions in a timely and cost-effective manner. We work to understand your particular goals and concerns so that we can design an estate plan that accomplishes your objectives. Our focus is on helping you get organized!

– by Ronnie of the Rebecca W. Geyer & Associates blog team