Estate planning is such an important aspect for all of us, but in complicated situations it is especially useful! Such a situation is that of Mario Puzo’s estate. Puzo is the author of the bestselling novel “The Godfather” and also assisted with the screenplay for the Oscar award winning film based off of the novel. Subsequent novels have since been written and published in the Godfather series, including one published this May. However, Puzo passed away in 1999. His son, as the executor of the estate, is battling with Paramount Studios over the rights to the proceeds on the latest published work.
BecauseParamounthas a prior contract with Puzo, they are fighting for the proceeds from the latest book. However, the Puzo estate is attempting to have the contract declared as no longer in effect so they can retain the proceeds as their own. This case will be decided by a judge and will likely go through a lengthy process of appeals as they fight for the profit in this latest installment of the popular series.
While most of us do not face such a complicated estate, planning ahead is an important way to avoid future conflicts. Had the estate been better planned, the rights to all future published works could have (and should have) been previously determined. By planning ahead a great deal of cost and conflict is avoided, giving loved ones peace of mind and assurance in the future.
What the Attorneys of Morris, Hall & Kinghorn Can Do For You:
The attorneys at Morris, Hall & Kinghorn have 100’s of years of combined experience ensuring that families’ assets are protected from probate, unnecessary taxes, creditors, ex-spouses and Medicaid spend-down. The attorneys also help those in Arizona and New Mexico to apply for and receive Medicaid assistance and Veterans Benefits. Our Arizona offices are located in Phoenix, Mesa, Scottsdale, Tucson, Prescott, Flagstaff and Arrowhead. Our New Mexico offices are located in Albuquerque, Las Cruces and Santa Fe. Contact us today at 888.222.1328 to schedule an appointment!
This blog should be used for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice. If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.
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