The legacy of Bob Marley - No planning, big cry!

    It was an anthem that captivated the world. It still is! Bob Marley’s break-through hit ’No Woman, No Cry’ is a song of hope that rose from the slums of Trench Town, Jamaica, in 1975. And despite drunken comments from disgruntled boyfriends and husbands “agreeing” with Bob that if you had no woman, you would not cry, the song is actually about a man consoling a defeated woman saying, “No woman, don’t cry…because everything’s gonna be alright!” The song launched a career and solidified Marley’s legendary status.

    But everything was not alright! When Marley died in 1981, his family was suddenly tossed into choppy financial waters when the reggae activist died intestate. Leaving behind a widow and 11 children (yes, you read that right) – four by his wife and eight from various other woman – meant that there were many hands reaching into the Marley pot, not to mention music producers and other opportunists who wanted a piece of the Marley pie.

    It’s hard to wrap your head around the fact that some of the world’s most significant and impactful people left their own families in tatters when they died without a will. Life can be unexpected, and their ill-preparedness made them ‘legends without a legacy’.

    The absence of a will led to bitter family feuds and costly legal battles which raged on for more than 10 years, and all the while the family struggled financially. The estate, however, continued to earn money as Marley’s music was used in films and commercials worldwide.

    Finally, in 1991, 10 years after his death and many, many legal fees later, the US$11.5 million estate was settled in court and awarded to his widow and split amongst his children.

    If only Bob Marley had a will in place when he died, his family could have grieved him peacefully knowing that ‘every little thing was gonna be alright!’

    Life can be unexpected.

    Get your complimentary will from Capital Legacy today.

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    The Legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. - He had a dream, but not a will.

    “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they are not judged by the colour of their skin, but by the content of their character!”

    Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream for equal rights and freedom spilled out of his mouth to 200,000 people during his iconic speech in Washington in 1963. His words reshaped thought and mobilised change worldwide, and yet his brilliance fell short of his personal matters.

    As we all know, life can be unexpected, which was the case for King Jr. when on 4 April 1968, he was shot outside the Lorraine Motel in Memphis and died an hour later from his injuries. The man who dreamed about ending segregation and hate in our world, created just that within his own family when he died without a will.

    The King family were locked in legal battles with outsiders, as well as each other, for 50 years!

    These disputes could have been eliminated if Martin Luther King Jr. had a will, and his family could have gone on to live his dream.

    Life can be unexpected.

    Get your complimentary will from Capital Legacy today.

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    The Legacy of Michael Jackson - Not all bad.

    If you’ve been on this planet within the last 40 years, you know all about Michael Jackson, the King of Pop. And whether what you know about him is that he was the most talented musician the world had ever seen or that ominous accusations hovered over his head, you can’t deny that his life, much like his death, was a thriller!

    Michael Jackson passed away at his home in 2001, leaving behind three young children and a valuable estate. Immediately after his death, the Jackson family could not find his will and in fear of losing his children, his mother, Katherine Jackson, made a desperate application to the court to be made executor of Michael’s estate. The family geared up for a lengthy legal battle.

    But, to the relief of Katherine, Michael’s attorney came forward with a signed will and Katherine withdrew her application when she discovered that Michael had appointed her permanent guardian of his children.

    Michael’s wishes were also honoured when his longtime attorney, John Branca, and music executive, John McClain, became administrators of the estate and Katherine was to be the beneficiary of a trust Michael had set up. 

    Katherine was very aware that had there not been a will, things would have been very bad for Michael’s children. Instead, the family mourned the loss of Michael and his legacy remained intact.

    Life can be unexpected.

    Get your complimentary will from Capital Legacy today.

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    The Legacy of Tupac Shakur - Living on borrowed time.

    Tupac lived fast, and he lived dangerously. In his short 25 years, he became an iconic rapper and actor, he forged the 1990s gangsta-rap aesthetic and sold more than 75 million albums, making him one of the top-selling artists of all time.

    Also in his short 25 years, he had many brushes with the law, went to jail for assault and survived being shot five times in 1994.

    For a man that experienced first-hand how unexpected life could be, ‘Pac’ did not rush out to get his personal affairs in order. Just two years later, as part of an alleged gang revenge crime, a gunman in a white Cadillac shot Tupac four times at a traffic light in Las Vegas. He died six days later, without a will.

    At the time of his death, Tupac’s record label, Death Row, claimed that the rapper owed them millions of dollars after he allegedly signed a three-record deal in exchange for bail money. Death Row took control of Tupac’s estate, which continued to make significant money.

    Years later, Tupac’s mother, Afeni Shakur, claimed that the estate had not received royalties from the release of previously unheard material. Unfortunately, Afeni died before the case was concluded, but in 1997, courts finally found in Afeni’s favour and unreleased music was returned to the estate, which is now valued at over US$40 million.

    Had Tupac protected his legacy with a will, Afeni would not have spent her final days living as fast and dangerously as her son in a bitter legal battle.

    Life can be unexpected.

    Get your complimentary will from Capital Legacy today.

    Click here for more information.