The battle over the estate if Sumner Redstone is one example of the ugliness of improper estate planning.
Chances are you have heard of the seemingly never-ending battle between the estate of Sumner Redstone and his long-time girlfriends.
It has been ugly.
Unfortunately, there seems to be no end in sight.
The latest drama?
According to a Variety article titled “Sumner Redstone Sues Two Ex-Companions for $150 Million,” Redstone has filed a lawsuit against Sydney Holland and Manuela Herzer for elder financial abuse regarding $150 million in assets.
Grievances include taking jewelry, designer clothing, etc., etc.
Did I mention allegations of fraud and emotional suffering.
What does this have to do with estate planning?
Herzer claims the payments were approved by Redstone, his trusted attorneys and doctors.
She says it is a ploy of Shari Redstone to discredit the suit Herzer brought against the Redstone estate for having been wrongfully disinherited.
Both women were removed from the Redstone home in 2015.
The reasons given?
Holland was accused of cheating.
Herzer was accused of manipulating and isolating Sumner Redstone.
Whether you choose to believe these women, their alleged actions would have been quite costly in estate and gift taxes.
Do not assume you are immortal.
No one is immune to aging and death.
Always work with an experienced estate planning attorney to prepare an estate plan to meet your personal and business needs.
Get second opinions.
You cannot always anticipate the motivations of people closest to you when it comes to money.
Remember: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” When making your financial, tax and estate plans, do not go it alone. Be sure to engage competent professional counsel.
For more information about estate planning in Overland Park, KS (and throughout the rest of Kansas and Missouri), visit our estate planning website and be sure to subscribe to our complimentary estate planning e-newsletter while you are there.
Reference: Variety (October 25, 2016) “Sumner Redstone Sues Two Ex-Companions for $150 Million”