Prince’s will row – family feud over £200m fortune to songs worth millions

Grammy award-winning singer Prince left a gaping hole in the music industry when he unexpectedly passed away in April 2016.

The musician who was known for his outstanding vocal ability, outlandish dress sense and undeniably cool persona was highly recognised for his astonishing contribution to music with a career which spanned across 40 years.

But although his life was legendary, his untimely death was a tragedy that many still find hard to believe.

Prince died from an accidental overdose after consuming fentanyl, a synthetic opioid that is 50 times more potent than heroin.

Leaving behind his close family and friends as well as his loyal fan base, Prince failed to make a will before his passing.

As another mournful anniversary falls amongst the world, Daily Star has taken a look inside a will that was never to be.

Family confusion

Prince died at the age of 57 and did not leave a formal will behind.

The star who was said to be worth $200 – $300 million (£153m to £229m) at the time of his death, had his family in long legal battles due to no written statement of where or who his money would go to if the worse was to happen.

Talking about the complications caused with not having a will, Judith T. Younger, a law professor at the University of Minnesota said: "It’s not unusual (because) he had complicated assets, he had a lot of money, he didn’t leave a will – not that that would necessarily hasten the process.

"His assets are hard to manage. The heirs fight among themselves. But that's not unique, not in Minnesota or anywhere in the country."

After the pop star died, several claimants came forward to hopefully gain some of his fortune.

However, it was later revealed that Prince's official heirs were narrowed down to six people: Tyka Nelson, his full sister, and his half-siblings, Norrine Nelson, Sharon Nelson, John Nelson, Alfred Jackson and Omarr Baker.

Selling his Caribbean villa

Following the Purple Rain singer's death, several of his assets went up for public sale.

One of the most prominent luxury properties, which might have brought in the most money to his overall fortune was Turtle Tail on the island of Turks and Caicos.

The gorgeous villa was a sprawling 10,000-square-foot that Prince purchased for nearly $13 million in 2010.

Initially, Prince's property went on the market for $12 million (£9m), however it didn't sell.

Next Premiere Estates which is a luxury real-estate auction house, put it up for auction in July 2018, with no minimum bid except for a $100,000 registration fee.

Agreement on the estate

In January Prince's estate including his catalogue of songs, has been valued at $156.4m (£114m) which was almost twice an earlier appraisal.

Now, after six long years of legal quarrels, all parties have agreed on a value for legendary singer Prince's estate.

The estate will be divided between three of singer's oldest siblings and Primary Wave, who is an independent music publishing and talent management company that purchased the interests of the Prince's younger siblings.

Talking about the long legal battle, Charles F. Spicer Jr., who was the court appointed advisor for the remaining heirs of the estate, confirmed the valuation to EW, adding that the family is thrilled that the legal battle haas reached a conclusion.

He said: "We're looking out for the best interest of fans [and] ensure that Prince's legacy remains for generations to come.

Potential earnings

Record company Primary Wave and the remaining members of Prince's heirs will now hope to amass new and ongoing revenue from the estate.

The award winner's brilliant and far-reaching song catalogue can earn the estate holders an income from streaming and sales royalties, as well as placements of Prince songs that may be included in film, TV and advertising.

The potentially lucrative returns from song his song catalogues have also spurred a wave of high-value acquisitions by major labels and publishing companies who may also want a share from the artist.

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