Category Archives: Guardianships

Access Hollywood Explores Britney Spears Conservatorship

Access Hollywood featured a segment about the Britney Spears Conservatorship. The show examined how the successful entertainer can headline a new multi-million dollar Las Vegas show and mentor young singers as an X Factor Judge, yet not be deemed competent enough to manage her basic life decisions like food, clothing and shelter.

Danielle and Andy Mayoras of Trial & Heirs served as experts for the segment. After watching the segment, what do you think?  Does Britney Spears still need the protection of a conservator — almost six years after the legal proceeding started — or is this all about the money? Watch Access Hollywood’s segment on the Britney Spears Conservatorship:

Access Hollywood. Dec. 19. 2013 – Short clip from Trial And Heirs on Vimeo.

By Danielle and Andrew Mayoras, co-authors of Trial & Heirs: Famous Fortune Fights!  For the latest celebrity and high-profile cases, with tips to protect yourself, your loved ones, and your clients, click here to subscribe to The Trial & Heirs Update.  You can  Read more...

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Casey Kasem’s Children and Wife Locked In Fight Over Conservatorship

For many years, kids across America listened to Casey Kasem, both as the legendary host of American Top 40 and as the voice to many cartoon characters including Shaggy of Scooby-Doo fame and Batman-sidekick Robin from Super Friends.  But now, his own kids say they don’t even get to listen to him — or even see him for that matter.  And it’s led to an ugly family feud in court.

The 81-year old Casey Kasem suffers from advanced Parkinson’s disease and is essentially bedridden.  He cannot walk without assistance and may have diminished mental capacity.  His wife of more than 30 years, Jean, has barred Kasem’s children from his first marriage, and other friends and family members (such as his younger brother) from visiting or speaking with Kasem.

In order to pressure Jean to allow them to see Kasem, daughters Kerri Kasem and Julie Kasem, with more than a dozen friends and family members, held a protest in front of the Kasem home.  When that failed to convince Jean to Read more...

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Will Conservatorship Work For Amanda Bynes?

For months, Amanda Bynes has been like a runaway train charging out-of-control down the tracks.  Multiple arrests … bizarre behavior … friends begging for someone to help her.  Many people feared a dramatic crash and fiery explosion.

A much smaller fire may have paved the way for her to get the help she obviously needs.  This week it was reported by multiple outlets, such as the New York Daily News, that Amanda Bynes set her pants on fire and accidentally doused her pet Pomeranian with gasoline in the driveway of an unsuspecting elderly woman.  She reportedly fled the scene, tried to wash the dog off at a convenience store, and fled again.  Bynes was picked up by authorities, who had her committed to a 72-hour psychiatric hospitalization.

This latest incident has given her parents the impetus to file for conservatorship over her.  They filed earlier this week, and had their first court hearing Friday morning.

Many people think it’s about time.  But filing for guardianship or conservatorship over a Read more...

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Amanda Bynes’ Comeback Could Begin With A Guardianship

Amanda Bynes came into the public eye as one of Nickelodeon’s sweethearts.  Now friends and colleagues are so worried about her recent  erratic behavior that they have been begging for police intervention. Her former publicist, Jonathan Jaxson, tweeted: “I just spoke to @AmandaBynes and she is soooo messed up on drugs and please @NY POLICE find her and help her! I don’t know her address!”

Amanda Bynes

Jenny McCarthy then tweeted, “Police are at @AmandaBynes house. I hope they get her help. Enough of this circus. She needs help.”

Just over a year ago, Amanda Bynes started down a path that many probably could not foresee. It started with being charged with driving under the influence last year after she hit a police car when she was talking on her cell phone. After that, she was charged with two more hit and run accidents, which were later dismissed. Since then, her behavior has seemed to get more bizarre and erratic by the month.

More recently, she tweeted to R&B/hip-hop artist Drake Read more...

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When Will Britney Spears Be Free Of Conservatorship?

The Britney Spears conservatorship saga has nearly reached its fifth year anniversary.  We all remember her shaved head, public meltdowns, and wild paparazzi photographs.  Her career, her relationship with her children, and even her life were all spinning dangerously out of control.

Compare that to her life now, five years later.  Thirty-one-year-old Britney looks a great deal different from twenty-six-year-old Britney.  She was just paid $15 million for one season’s work as a judge on the X Factor.  Was she the best judge around?  That’s debatable.  There were reports that Simon Cowell wouldn’t have her back for another season, but it was Britney’s decision to leave X-Factor.

Britney Spears conservatorship video

Either way, there’s no debate that Britney seemed … well, very normal.  She was mature, composed, even graceful at times. She mentored teenage singers.  She held herself together and gave constructive feedback.  Britney was reportedly re-energized by the experience and is ready to start releasing new music and touring again.

What thirty-one-year-old Britney doesn’t look like is someone who Read more...

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Legally Blonde Reese Witherspoon Goes To Court To Protect Father From Bigamy

One of Reese Witherspoon’s more famous roles was as the perky young attorney in Legally Blonde.  Late last week, she accompanied her parents to court in a much more somber setting.

Reese Witherspoon’s father, Dr. John Draper Witherspoon, was recently married.  At least, that’s what a newspaper in Nashville, Tennessee announced.  You can read the big announcement and see the happy couple’s wedding photo here.
While John doesn’t exactly look happy in the picture, the announcement reveals that they will reside together in Nashville, following the intimate ceremony that featured cowboy boots and yellow roses, based on their Texas heritage.  The festivities took place on January 14th, and the couple plans a celebration with friends and family for the summer.

Reese Witherspoon’s Father Sued For Bigamy

There’s just one problem.  Reese’s 70-year old father, John, was never divorced from Reese’s mother, Mary.  While they’ve been living apart for the last 16 years, they still are married.  Mary says she still loves her husband of 42 years, Read more...

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Brooke Astor Estate Settlement: Marshall Gets His Just Desserts

News broke last week about the Brooke Astor estate settlement.  The renowned New York society queen and philanthropist, who died at age 105, left behind an estate of nearly $200 million dollars.  brooke astor estate settlement
Brooke Astor’s assets — along with the $50 million charitable trust of her late husband — have been tied up since she passed in 2007.  The fighting was so extensive that it dragged in a “who’s who” of top New York City institutions, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Carnegie Hall, the New York Public Library, Rockefeller University, and even the United Nations, among many others.
Under Astor’s 2002 will, her only son, Anthony Marshall, stood to inherit tens of millions of dollars, with most of it slated to pass to charity after he died.  But Marshall wanted much more.  He and a lawyer,  Francis X. Morrissey, Jr., convinced the elderly Astor — when she was suffering from dementia — to sign a series of codicils to Astor’s 2002 will.  These codicils would have allowed Marshall to leave Read more...

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Zsa Zsa Gabor Family Feud Heads To Court

Zsa Zsa Gabor’s daughter, Francesca Hilton, and 9th husband, Prince Frederic von Anhalt have been fighting each other about Gabor’s finances and medical care for years.  When von Anhalt announced that he wanted his 94-year old wife to be a “mother” again by seeking an egg donor, artificial insemination and a surrogate mother — which could make Gabor a mother, at least legally– we wrote that the fight was destined to end up in court through a conservator proceeding.  The only surprise since then has been that it’s taken this long for Hilton to start the court case. 

Her attorney filed the conservatorship paperwork in the Los Angeles probate court  on March 20, 2012.  Interestingly, the case was assigned to the same judge who is handling Britney Spears’ conservatorship.  Hilton asks to be appointed as the conservator for her mother, which would give her the right to make Gabor’s medical, financial and other decisions under the supervision of the court, if she wins the case.

In her petition to Read more...

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Britney Spears’ Conservatorship: Oops! … Britney Spears’ Conservator Did It Again

The once-troubled pop star sure has been in the news a lot lately.  Settling lawsuits, postponing her wedding, negotiating to be a judge on The X Factor, putting one of her mansions up for sale.  It makes you wonder … is Britney Spears making any decisions about her life, or does her father, as her Conservator, decide everything?

Several months ago, we wrote how her father, Jamie Spears, was using the conservatorship to insulate Britney from lawsuits, including one by a company called Brand Sense.  The company had sued Britney for breach of contract, after Team Britney cut Brand Sense out of profits from her perfume deal with Elizabeth Arden.  Because Britney had been declared mentally incompetent, which justified the conservatorship, her father and their attorneys were able to keep Britney from being questioned under oath in a deposition for the lawsuit.

Recently, they’ve settled the case and agreed to give Brand Sense a confidential amount of the profits.  The Daily Mail in Britain reported that the settlement   Read more...

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Whitney Houston’s Funeral Suggests Trouble Brewing For Her Estate

Whitney Houston’s funeral this weekend provided the first public glimpse of what may be trouble involving her estate.  Her ex-husband, Bobby Brown, was invited to the funeral, after reports surfaced that some family members didn’t want him there. He didn’t last long.  Brown’s entourage wasn’t allowed to sit with him at the funeral.  Brown wasn’t happy and left, visibly upset.

Bobby Brown issued a statement after the funeral, saying he and his group were asked to relocate three times, and rather than making a scene, he chose to pay his respects quickly and leave.

TMZ reported the day before Whitney Houston’s funeral that mother, Cissy Houston, and other family members had been trying to keep Brown away from Bobbi Kristina, Whitney’s daughter with Brown.  They were said to be worried that Brown would try to use Bobbi Kristina to make a play for some of Whitney’s money.

Brown’s statement confirmed some of this.  He said that security prevented him from seeing his daughter at the funeral.  Is money the reason Read more...

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