Marshall V. Marshall Case

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Marshall 's estate appealed the bankruptcy court 's decision to the federal district court. Federal Judge David O. Carter found in his 2002 opinion that J. Howard had made "some preliminary efforts through his lawyers to draw up a new trust for Anna Nicole 's benefit." This enraged his son, who was much older than Anna Nicole, and who did not believe she was entitled to his father 's estate. He allegedly forged and altered documents in order to create a trust that only he would have the right to inherit upon his father 's death, and which over time he had begun funneling assets into. The $474 million she was awarded for E. Pierce 's interference with the estate was reduced to $90 million. In 2004, the Court of Appeals for the Ninth …show more content…

The next appeal was to the United States Supreme Court, who agreed to hear the Marshall v. Marshall case in 2006. In an unanimous decision, the Court 's opinion was that federal courts did have some degree of jurisdiction over probate matters. The justices remanded the case back down to the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit for reexamination.
When Anna Nicole died of a drug overdose in 2007, her former attorney and boyfriend, as well as the executor of her estate, Howard K. Stern, took over the litigation, which again made its way to the U.S. Supreme Court. The Court 's ruling in Stern v. Marshall (2011) barred bankruptcy courts from issuing judgments like the one Smith had been awarded by the Californian bankruptcy court. In its 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court found that "the Bankruptcy Court...lacked the constitutional authority" to enter judgment on her counterclaim against E. Pierce.
More recently, a decision by U.S. District Judge David O. Carter may have ended the chances of Anna Nicole 's only heir, her daughter, to collect from E. Pierce 's estate. The judge dismissed an attempt to collect sanctions from the Marshall family over the tactics they and their lawyers had employed during the lengthy litigation over the estate. Dannielynn Birkhead, who once stood to inherit millions, could end up inheriting nothing despite her mother 's attempts to contest Marshall 's will, as well as her attempts to sue his son, and then his son 's estate, for …show more content…

Singer James Brown, who died in 2006, also had his estate become the subject of a will contest and of several lawsuits. His will left the majority of his estate to a charitable trust that he intended to benefit needy children and also provided funding for his grandchildren 's educations. Although his will included a no-contest clause, several of his children and grandchildren sued to overturn the will and to remove the three executors he had appointed to his estate, claiming that Brown had been unduly influenced by his lawyers and managers. No-contest clauses preclude anyone who is named in a will from contesting it or else they stand to lose all assets that they otherwise would have inherited. Additionally, some of his family members claimed that they had discovered earlier wills showing he did not want to leave the bulk of his estate to charity. However, the absence of any mention of charitable trusts in his earlier wills does not necessarily prove that Brown had no intention to leave most of his estate to charity. Rather, his siblings ' argument seems to be a last-ditch effort to get their hands on something Brown did not

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