The Elder and Disability Law Firm, APC Jan. 5, 2015

Acute intoxication was listed as the cause of death when the artist Thomas Kinkade passed away recently at the age of 54. Kinkade was very successful financially and it is estimated that the value of his estate when he died was somewhere in the vicinity of $65 million.

There are times when celebrities pass away without executing a proper estate plan and these cases can sometimes be instructive as you see what can take place if you do not plan ahead intelligently. When it comes to Thomas Kinkade, he did in fact execute a formal estate plan along with his wife Nanette.

However, the couple separated after Nanette filed for divorce so they were estranged at the time of Kinkade's death. He had been living with his girlfriend Amy Pinto-Walsh for about a year and a half according to reports.

As you might expect she is not named in the will that was created by Kinkade and his wife. However, Thomas Kinkade stated his desire to leave $10 million and his home to his girlfriend in a hand written or holographic will. A second hand written will is also in the possession of Ms. Pinto-Walsh stating that the $10 million is to be used to create a museum that would show his work.

The interesting thing about these holographic wills is that a handwriting expert says that Kinkade must have been very drunk when he drew up the documents.

Nanette refuses to accept the validity of these documents, contending that Kinkade was not of sound mind when he executed them.

When you hear this story you can see why expert advice is essential when life changes occur and you want to provide for someone that you care about. If you are in this position, right now would be a good time to pick up the phone to arrange for a consultation with a good Redlands estate planning lawyer.

Share on: