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Estate plan of The Velvet Underground's Lou Reed made public

Whenever a celebrity dies, the news is typically flooded with every last detail of their demise. Then, details about the value of their estate may be made public also. One way to avoid having these details made public is for celebrities or others who have a high value estate to have a trust created rather than a will. Anyone in Michigan who is concerned about their estate plan may want to learn more about the difference between a trust and will and why some think Lou Reed handled this issue wrong.

Lou Reed’s estate is estimated to be worth $30 million. A will that has been processed through probate states that the singer left his wife 75 percent of the estate. He left the remaining 25 percent to his sister. He also left a cash amount to his sister for the sole purpose of providing care for their elderly mother.

While there are no real scandalous or outrageous details being released to the public in this case, having the estate outlined in a will can sometimes lead to conflict. A will can be tied up in probate court for years if one party decides to contest the will. If Lou Reed had put a trust in place for his beneficiaries, there would be no means of contesting the amount, and the amounts would be private information rather than public.

Estate planning can be complicated and also a highly personal process for people in Michigan and elsewhere. The decision to create a will or trust can be difficult to make and may depend on an individual’s wishes or the size of an estate. Before deciding on one option over another, it is vital that anyone sitting down to start an estate plan has all of the information and can rely on trusted help to get the process started.

Source: forbes.com, "Lou Reed Walked On The Wild Side With His Estate Planning", Danielle and Andy Mayoras, July 10, 2014

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