Readers in Texas have likely heard the name of actor, James Gandolfini. He came to fame as the star of television show, The Sopranos and when on to a successful career in film. Unfortunately, Gandolfini passed away recently while on vacation in a foreign land. This has led to questions from his heirs and beneficiaries regarding the estate planning documents that he left behind.
A recent report that may be of interest to readers here in Texas indicates that Gandolfini has an estate worth as much as $70 million at the time of his death. It appears that he had an estate plan in place, though there is some indication that the estate may not have been appropriately completed to protect it from the estate tax. This may have been achieved had certain types of trusts been created for the benefit of the beneficiaries of the estate.
In cases with large value assets, estate planning often includes combination of the available tools. Goals for those who care seeking to plan for their eventual death often do so with the idea that they will be able to both have their wishes for asset distribution followed and offer protection for their heirs and beneficiaries. These may also have been the goal of celebrities such as Gandolfini.
Planning an estate in Texas often means that a person should first seek all available information as t the different planning tools as they relate to their estate. This effort will help to ensure a good outcome that benefits beneficiaries and heirs and limits the chance of litigation. These steps can be helpful for many people, regardless of whether they are a celebrity, like Gandolfini, or not.
Source: US News and World Report, "Estate Planning Lessons From James Gandolfini," Kimberly Palmer, July 16, 2013