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Prince Passing May Cause Feud Between Estate, Beneficiaries and IRS

April 25, 2016

The IRS, the estate and potential inheritors of pop icon Prince could all come to blows over the value of his assets – especially if he died without leaving a will, InvestmentNews and other media outlets speculate.

Simply putting a value on the deceased rock star’s estate will likely be a complex task, Richard Behrendt, director of estate planning at Annex Wealth Management, tells InvestmentNews. In particular, valuing intangible assets such as future royalties, InvestmenNews writes.

Prince’s fortune has been estimated at around $300 million, according to the Daily Mail.

Behrendt tells InvestmentNews that the artist’s death could potentially increase the value of the estate’s future earnings. “The IRS will factor that in and say his death will blow the royalties off the charts, but his attorneys will say, ’You can’t do that,’” he says in InvestmentNews .

And such calculations could be a bone of heavy contention, as evidenced by the ongoing court battle over Michael Jackson’s estate, InvestmentNews reports, citing the Hollywood Reporter’s coverage.

Yet determining the value of the estate and the potential tax the IRS will demand is only half the battle for Prince’s former advisors and attorneys. Establishing beneficiaries of the estate could be an equally complex proposition if Prince died without a will.

Prince (Getty)

While nothing is yet publicly known about whether or not Prince left a will, if he died intestate, Minnesota law provides first for any grandchildren (of which Prince has none). Parents and siblings are next in line. Prince has a sister, Tyka Nelson, explains InvestmentNews.

However, Charlie Douglas, a board member of the National Association of Estate Planners and Councils, tells InvestmentNews that by many accounts Prince was an astute businessman who was unlikely to have died intestate.

  • To read the Daily Mail article cited in this story, click here.
  • To read the Hollywood Reporter article cited in this story, click here.
  • To read the InvestmentNews article cited in this story, click here.