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Tina Turner’s recent passing rocked the music world, as we lost one of the true legends. Tina had survived years of spousal abuse at the hands of her ex-husband, only to reinvent herself with the song and movie What’s Love Got to Do With It. She was, in the words of another of her great songs, Simply the Best. However, her family life was a little more complicated, which is why it is so vital to have proper estate planning, especially if you are leaving behind a sizable fortune. This is why celebrity estate planning can be one of the more fascinating areas of the law. Nevertheless, the goal with any estate is to make things as clear as possible when your will goes to probate. 

Tina Turner’s Complicated Family Life

While she had a very rocky relationship with ex-husband Ike Turner, her marriage to German music executive Erwin Bach was the picture of a loving relationship. Tina suffered through some physical hardships towards the end of her life, suffering a stroke and battling intestinal cancer. Erwin showed his love for Tina by donating one of his kidneys to her. Tina didn’t need another hero, but she sure profited from having a loving and supportive life partner for the final chapter of her life.

Tina knew tragedy in her life. Her son Ronnie died of metastatic colon cancer just months before Tina died, leaving behind his widow Afida Turner. Her older son Craig took his own life in 2018. He left no heirs.

Although both of her biological sons predeceased her, Tina had adopted two of Ike’s children from his prior marriage, Ike Jr. and Michael. While Tina had become estranged from Ike Jr. in recent years, she was apparently still in touch with Michael and would send him money from time to time.

Hazards of Complex Families

Tina Turner’s family situation shows the possible problems that can arise if a person with a complex family does not undertake proper estate planning. In Tina’s case, she was survived by a second husband, two adopted sons, and a number of other relatives. If a person dies intestate, meaning they had no will or other estate planning document, then the estate will be governed by applicable law. If Tina was an Ohio resident at the time of her death and she left no will, then her husband Erwin would have inherited either $20,000 or $60,000 depending on whether he adopted Michael and Ike Jr., as well as one-third of the balance of her estate. The remaining two-thirds would be divided equally between Michael and Ike Jr. Considering that Tina’s estate is valued at well over $250 million, we are talking about a seriously large amount of money. 

Similarly, if Tina was living in Kentucky, Erwin would have inherited one-half of her personal property, and one-third of any real estate that she owned at the time of her death. The remainder would be divided equally between Michael and Ike Jr. As you can see, if Tina had wanted to give more money to Michael than Ike Jr. because he stayed in touch with her, she would have been unable to do so had she not done any estate planning. In addition, in both states, she would have been unable to leave any money to other relatives under intestacy laws. This includes her daughter-in-law, Afida.

The Outcome of the Tina Turner Estate

It actually appears that Tina Turner had some expert professional advice when it came to estate planning. Reports have come out that she completed her estate planning over two years ago. This will keep her estate Rolling on the River instead of getting stuck in a costly and acrimonious battle that is River Deep, Mountain High. This is crucial since her estate includes the $50 million she was paid by BMG for her music catalog, as well as lavish homes in France and Switzerland. The estate attorneys will be busy enough working with foreign authorities to transfer these properties that they don’t need the headaches of a fight in probate court between Tina’s relatives.

Book a Call with Us to Help You with Your Estate Planning

Tina Turner’s estate shows the value of proper estate planning, especially when dealing with a complex family arrangement. While you may not have as many assets as Tina left, your estate is still important to you, and you want to make sure that your loved ones don’t get into a fight over them upon your death. Our team of experienced estate planning attorneys at Shaw & Nelson will help guide you through the process and make sure that you get an estate plan that is worthy of a celebrity.