In an unsurprisingly irreverent fashion, Snoop Dogg has explained his decision not to create a will, claiming “I don’t give a **** when I’m dead.” Unfortunately for Snoop’s beneficiaries, his decision not to create a will could have costly consequences, both in terms of time and money.
As Maire Connor reported earlier this year, the fact that Prince died without a will, meaning nearly half the late singer’s estate could be consumed by federal taxes. Not only this, but with no provisions as to how the estate is divided, potential beneficiaries could claim to be entitled to far more than others would like them to receive, and the process could go on for years.
The problem is not a new one. In his 1852 novel Bleak House, Charles Dickens details the issues that can arise regarding uncertainties over a person’s estate. By the end of the novel the case, which has been going on for decades, is resolved, but the legal battle depleted the estate to such an extent that nothing is left for any of the beneficiaries. While Dickens intended his novel to be a satire of the British legal system, it seems that many of the regulations he deemed ridiculous are still in effect, at least in America.
Though his estate is less than half the size of Prince’s – $135,000 as opposed to $300,000 – the problems facing Prince’s beneficiaries could one day be the same ones faced by Snoop’s. Snoop, however, has a very Zen approach to his death. At the time he made the remarks announcing his indifference regarding his will, he also expressed his wish to be reincarnated as a butterfly, that he might watch the ‘dumb’ people who instead of enjoying their lives are fighting over his money.
Vardags Limited is a limited company trading as Vardags, Company No 7199468, registered in England and Wales, having its registered office at 10 Old Bailey, London EC4M 7NG. Vardags is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA Number 535955). Its VAT number is 99 001 7230.
Vardags uses the term ‘Partner’ as a professional title only, to describe a Senior Solicitor, Employee or Consultant with relevant experience, expertise and qualifications (whether legally qualified or otherwise) to merit the title. Our Partners are not partners in the legal sense. They are not liable for the debts, liabilities or obligations of Vardags Limited. Similarly, the term ’Director’ is a professional title only, to describe a non-legally qualified employee or consultant of Vardags with relevant experience, expertise and qualifications to merit the title. It does not necessarily imply that the relevant individual is a director of Vardags Limited.
A list of the directors of Vardags Limited and a list of the names of those using the title of ’Director’ and ’Partner’ together with their official status is available for inspection at Vardags’ registered office.