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EntertainmentAretha Franklin's handwritten wills reveal window into her private world: Read them here

00:45  22 may  2019
00:45  22 may  2019 Source:   usatoday.com

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Though Aretha Franklin was thought to have left no will when died in 2018, she apparently put extensive thought into a series of handwritten wills . At times affectionate, at times catty, they 're a peek into Franklin ' s carefully secluded private world . The handwriting in the documents, obtained

Aretha Franklin ' s handwritten wills reveal window into her private world : Read them here . At times affectionate, at times catty, they 're a peek into Franklin ' s carefully secluded private world . The handwriting in the documents, obtained Tuesday by the Detroit Free Press, has not been confirmed to

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The handwriting is often messy, the instructions sometimes contradictory.

But three handwritten documents apparently prepared by Aretha Franklin show that the singer was indeed thinking about the fate of her estate.

Franklin was thought to have left no will when she died Aug. 16 in Detroit, prompting many to wonder why a figure of her stature would neglect such an essential task.

But the three documents submitted this week to Oakland County probate court, said to have been found in her residence, reveal that she did put in an effort. Two are dated 2010, while the other — said to be in a notebook found under the cushions of a living room couch — is marked 2014.

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Three handwritten wills have been found in the home of Aretha Franklin , months after the death of the Queen of Soul, including one that was discovered Lawyers and family members said at the time that she had no will , but three handwritten versions were discovered earlier this month at the home.

Franklin ' s wishes regarding the distribution and administration of her estate after her death could have been made more clear and remained more private had Franklin created a clear and You can find the three handwritten wills and the court documents here in an article by the Detroit Free Press.

Aretha Franklin's handwritten wills reveal window into her private world: Read them here © Provided by Gannett Co., Inc.

In the newly found documents, she also emphatically disavows two previous wills she'd supposedly prepared decades earlier, including one with a letter addressed to Temptations singer and romantic flame Dennis Edwards.

Aretha Franklin's handwritten wills reveal window into her private world: Read them here © Evan Agostini/Invision/AP Aretha Franklin attends the premiere of "Selma" in New York. The documents show that the singer did give extensive thought — albeit in her own idiosyncratic, sometimes haphazard way — to how her financial matters should be handled after her death. At times affectionate, at times catty, they're a peek into Franklin's carefully secluded private world.

The handwriting in the documents, obtained Tuesday by the Detroit Free Press, has not been confirmed to be Franklin's. A June 12 hearing has been scheduled on the matter.

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More: Aretha Franklin ' s handwritten wills reveal window into her private world : Read them here . Kecalf Franklin , youngest son of Aretha Franklin , attends the probate hearing for his mother's estate concerning a found written will at Oakland County courthouse in Pontiac, Mich. on Tuesday

(AP) — Three handwritten wills have been found in the suburban Detroit home of Aretha Franklin Franklin was 76 when she died last August of pancreatic cancer. Lawyers and family members He told a judge that he' s not sure if they 're legal under Michigan law. A hearing is scheduled for June 12.

Read the documents

• Aretha Franklin handwritten note Oct. 20, 2010

• Aretha Franklin handwritten will June 21, 2010

Aretha Franklin handwritten will March 31, 2014

Petition on admission of Aretha Franklin handwritten wills

Here are some takeaways from a close reading of 16 pages — which are often difficult to decipher due to the handwriting and frequent additions and strike-throughs:

• The earliest handwritten will is dated June 21, 2010 — several months before Franklin canceled upcoming tour dates while revealing but not naming a medical issue.

In the document, she declares that she is of sound mind and health, "with the exception of high blood pressure" and "a mass on the pancreas." Franklin, who spent the next eight years periodically disappearing from public view, ultimately died of pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors.

• Franklin was being paid $100,000 annually in royalties by Warner Bros., parent company of Atlantic Records, the label that released hits such as "Respect." The company also held an account with deferred royalties, totaling $1.6 million as of 2010.

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Aretha Franklin ' s handwritten wills reveal window into her private world : Read them here . Though Aretha Franklin was thought to have left no will when she died, she apparently put extensive thought into a series of handwritten wills .

Aretha Franklin ' s handwritten wills reveal window into her private world : Read them here . Though Aretha Franklin was thought to have left no will when she died, she apparently put extensive thought into a series of handwritten wills .

Such an arrangement is unusual in the record business, and it's unexplained why Franklin or Warner set it up that way. But by receiving just $100,000 yearly, Franklin would have reduced her tax burden.

• Franklin clearly attempted to be fair to her four sons. While assorted details change between 2010 and 2014, she seemed intent that the sons — Clarence, Edward, Teddy and Kecalf — be treated equitably. She frequently writes that particular assets are to be "evenly distributed" among the latter three, while detailed provisions are outlined for Clarence, who has special needs.

In the 2014 will, Franklin wrote that her song copyrights and her stake in the pending MGM film about her life should go to the sons, who were also to receive her gold records and awards. Property including her piano, records and CDs were earmarked for the sons and her grandchildren, while funds from several bank accounts were to be "split evenly" among various family members, including nieces and a cousin.

In 2010, she wrote that her "jewelry, furs, fine furnishings, music, art, copyrights would belong to my estate or to be divided equally to my children."

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Aretha Franklin left behind multiple wills that were just discovered inside a locked box hidden in her home Inside the cabinet, Owens found two purported holographic wills signed by Franklin . The Queen of Soul threw a little bit of shade into her will , calling out her attorney, David Bennett, as being

While Aretha Franklin was thought to have died without leaving behind a will , earlier this month three documents were discovered by her niece and filed in court earlier this week, according to the Associated Press.

She also designated $50,000 in the 2014 will for her half-sister in Memphis, Carl Ellan Kelley, born in 1940 as the daughter of the Rev. C.L. Franklin. "We have different mothers," Aretha Franklin noted in the document. (Kelley died in January 2019.)

The Queen of Soul also suggested that her "papers" be given to colleges or auctioned, and she asked that her gowns be auctioned by Sotheby's or donated to the Smithsonian Institution.

Aretha Franklin's handwritten wills reveal window into her private world: Read them here © Micah Walker From left to right: Mayor Mike Duggan, Aretha Franklin's niece Sabrina Owens, City Council President Brenda Jones The Right Productions President Shahida Mausi and Aretha Franklin's son, Kecalf at the unveiling of the Aretha Franklin Amphitheatre on Friday, May 17.

• She names Edward Jordan Sr. as the father of her eldest son, Clarence, born when she was 12. Jordan was already publicly known as the father of the singer's second son, Edward Franklin, born two years later. But Clarence's father has typically been cited by biographers and others as a schoolmate named Donald Burke.

In the 2010 will, Franklin declares that Jordan is to "never receive or handle any money or property belonging to Clarence."

"He has never made any contribution to his welfare, future or past," Franklin writes, underlining "never" for emphasis.

• Franklin takes jabs at various lawyers and other professionals who worked for her. They include a Southfield accountant she claims "cost me roughly $90,000 by not reminding me I had only partially paid taxes for the year 2008." In the 2010 will, she describes one lawyer as "my primary but grossly inefficient attorney."

Contact Detroit Free Press music writer Brian McCollum: 313-223-4450 or bmccollum@freepress.com.

Read More

Tension developing in Aretha Franklin will dispute.
A fight is emerging over whether a son of Aretha Franklin could be put in charge of the late singer's estate after a 2014 handwritten will was found under cushions in her suburban Detroit home.Attorneys for the estate said in a court filing Monday that "there is no basis to support the assumption" that Kecalf Franklin has the "ability, skill (and) knowledge" to become personal representative, even if the will is determined to be valid. Franklin's image, music and other assets could turn out to be worth millions of dollars in the years ahead.Her sons had agreed to put the estate in the hands of Sabrina Owens, a relative who is a university administrator, when no will was found after Franklin's death la

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