Martin Luther King, Jr. is a name that is familiar to our readers in Texas. The civil rights leader died after being shot by an assassin in 1968. Now, his estate is embroiled in a lawsuit over preserving the ownership of his image for his heirs and beneficiaries.
The lawsuit is between the estate of Dr. King and a former aide who has been close to his family for years. The former aide, Andrew Young, has had a storied career of his own. In fact, he served as mayor, ambassador and Congressman over the past four decades.
At the time of his death, Dr. King gained worldwide fame through his efforts within the civil rights movement. This meant that his image had, and continues to have, considerable value. This is an asset that his estate must work to protect for the benefit of the King heirs and beneficiaries. At issue is whether Mr. Young owns images of King that were used in a recent documentary film. The court will make that determination as the lawsuit progresses.
The estate of Dr. King is led by two of his sons who act as executors for the estate. These men are tasked with taking actions that protect the estate for the benefit of heirs and beneficiaries. This is similar to how executors of other, less famous, estates would be expected to act in Texas. In every case of estate planning in our state, it is important to carefully consider the selection of an executor. This is because it is that individual that is responsible for collecting and distributing the estate's assets.
Source: ABC6, Andrew Young at odds with MLK's children, Deepti Hajela, Nov. 22, 2013