A couple weeks ago, I wrote how Katherine Jackson had a surprising “change of heart” by dropping her challenge to the executors for Michael’s estate. In fact, her husband Joe Jackson was shocked — his lawyer called the move “despicable”.
Well, if this exclusive report from the United Kingdom website News of the World is accurate, we now know why Katherine did so.
According to this report (which has been picked up by MSN Entertainment along with other websites), Katherine made the deal because the executors, John Branca and John McClain, had agreed to add a trusted family member as a third executor. And, even better, this new executor would have veto power over decisions of Branca and McClain.
So who is the trusted family member? Taj — Tariano Adaryll Jackson, Michael’s 36-year old nephew and Tito Jackson’s son. He is reportedly very close to Michael’s children and mother, and was Michael’s favorite nephew. He’ll be able to give the family a voice.
This explanation makes a lot of sense. It had been reported for months that Katherine and the two executors had been closing in on a deal where a family member would be added to the estate administration team to address Katherine’s concerns.
As a probate lawyer specializing in contested cases like this one, I applaud the fact that Katherine and the two executors were able to settle their dispute. They had already spent so much time and money fighting in court, putting an end to the challenge only made sense. It’s very important in cases like this one for people to put emotions aside and try to reach a resolution that makes sense for everyone.
Is it easy to do? No, which is why working with an experienced attorney is a must. If you find yourself in a mess like this and need the help of a good attorney, you should check out Trial & Heirs: Famous Fortune Fights!, which teaches people their legal rights in will and trust disputes, with the help of celebrity stories like this one. It also helps with tips on finding good attorneys.
Or you can visit the Trial & Heirs website and fill out a questionnaire, and we’ll help you (at no cost) find an attorney.
So does this mark the end of the Michael Jackson estate fight? Maybe. Joe Jackson reportedly isn’t ready to give up yet. He is planning to appeal the judge’s decision not to allow him to seek removal of Branca and McClain. So stay tuned … it may not be over yet!
Posted by: Author and probate attorney Andrew W. Mayoras, co-author of Trial & Heirs: Famous Fortune Fights! and co-founder and shareholder of The Center for Probate Litigation and The Center for Elder Law in metro-Detroit, Michigan, which concentrate in probate litigation, estate planning, and elder law. You can email him at blog @ trialandheirs.com.