Amy Whinehouse died without a will. She died intestate. She died without making clear what she wanted to happen to her nearly $7 million dollar estate. She died without making clear what she wanted to have happen to her remains, her body, after she died. She died without her voice and her choice being heard.
Amy Whinehouse may have only been 27 years old when she died, a very young age, most would say, to think you need a last will and testament. However, she had lived many lifetimes in those twenty seven years. She had been married and divorced. She had purchased real estate in London. She had what some have reported as strained relationships with some members of her family. She had earned significant income and had assets which were worth an estimated $6.7 million dollars at her death. She was young, but all these lifetimes mentioned above are reasons, in and of themselves, to have a last will and testament. To have an estate plan.
Whinehouse did not. Instead, when she passed away, what happened to her money and things was decided by law. In this case, it was British law which addressed what happened when you died without a will (died intestate). Her father stepped in an acted as Executor of her estate. Would she have wanted that? We don’t know. Her parents, divorced when she was nine, received her entire estate. Would she have wanted that? We don’t know. Amy Whinehouse was given a funeral, then cremated. Would she have wanted that? We don’t know. Her ashes were interred under a black and pink memorial stone. Would she have wanted that? We don’t know.
We don’t know because Amy Whinehouse didn’t have a will. So her parents, more her father, made a lot of these decisions. So her parents, by law, received her almost $7 million dollar estate. So her voice and choice wasn’t heard, by law. You may not have a $7 million dollar estate built on the hard work of being a singer and songwriter, being a celebrity. But you do have a voice and opinion.
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