When the ‘Status Quo’ changes…
16 January 2017 by Diane Rudd
Most people would agree that 2016 was a terrible year for celebrity deaths many much-loved personalities are now no longer with us. In the music scene two of the most recent deaths were Rick Parfitt and George Michael.
For those people old enough to remember, Live Aid in the UK started with Rick Parfitt and Francis Rossi, of Status Quo rocking all over the world. Rick had a career spanning over fifty years with Quo’s first top ten hit in 1968.
Rick was one of rock’s more colourful characters and had had multiple heart attacks and a cancer scare, having to pull out of his bands tour last Summer after he collapsed. His personal life was eventful with three marriages all of which produced children including twins born in 2008. He broke up with his third wife Lyndsay last October reportedly by telephone. It would appear that Lindsay dealt with all of his finances.
When people are thinking about wills they might assume that it is a once in a lifetime event but it is a good idea to look at a Will if personal and/or financial matters change. Hopefully Rick would have changed his Will regularly.
Divorce does cancel references in a will to a spouse but merely splitting up has no effect whereas if a person makes a “normal” will it is cancelled as a whole when, eg a marriage certificate is signed.
Rick’s estate has been estimated at £10 million and includes a five bedroom house in Marbella. Foreign assets can produce a legal minefield and hopefully Rick would have taken legal advice as to whether he needed a will in Spain and whether a Spanish will would have a knock-on effect on his English will.
George Michael’s assets have been estimated at £125 million, including £20 million worth of property. He seems to have been very close to his family and Martin Kemp (ex Spandau Ballet’s) children are his godchildren. His personal life was also quite colourful and he may or may not have had a boyfriend when he died (depending on which news reports are true) and had broken up with long-term boyfriend some years ago. There have been comments that he may not have altered his will since 2009 and if this is true the last boyfriend is likely to have been left nothing as they only became “an item” in 2012. This is potentially a classic case of the peril of not reviewing a Will when personal circumstances change e.g marriage, separation, divorce or new children or grandchildren. We offer a free Will clinic in each of our offices on a Thursday morning where we will be happy to talk about your Wills and whether they need updating.
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