When Audrey Hepburn passed away she owned a storage locker that contained many of the pieces of memorabilia she had collected over the years during her acting career. She instructed that her two sons, each by different fathers, should split the contents of the locker equally between them.
That was over two decades ago and the personal items still sit in the same storage locker awaiting division by the sons because they cannot agree who gets what.
The New York Post reported this story in a recent article titled "Audrey Hepburn's kids still fighting over her stuff."
A couple of different issues might be in play here.
First, because the sons have different fathers and have an age difference of 10 years, there might be very little love lost between them. It is not unusual in blended families for step-siblings to argue over a parent's estate.
Another issue might be that Hepburn's personal effects are likely to have value to collectors. Each brother could be insisting that he should get the items that are perceived to have more value on the market.
Whenever blended families are involved it is important that estate plans are as detailed as possible. As this case shows it is not always a safe assumption that the children will be able to agree about dividing the estate in the absence of clear instructions.
Contact an experienced Cincinnati estate planning attorney to make sure you address all blended family issues.
Remember: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” When making your estate plans or when probating an estate or administering a trust, do not go it alone. Be sure to engage a Cincinnati estate planning attorney.
For more information about estate planning, probate or trust administration in Cincinnati (and throughout the rest of Southwest Ohio) and to review free resources regarding estate planning, probate or trust administration, visit my website. If you have questions regarding this article or a particular legal matter, feel free to contact me at 513-399-PLAN (7526).
Reference: New York Post (May 27, 2015) "Audrey Hepburn's kids still fighting over her stuff."