What’s the Latest on Country Star Charley Pride ’s Estate?

Grammy-winning country star Charley Pride died from COVID-19 in December, and an article from 5 NBC DFW entitled “Charley Pride’s ‘Secret’ Son Contests Will” reports that his son Tyler has revealed the family “secret.” His story started with an affair between his mother, a flight attendant, and his father, country music’s first Black superstar.

At the time of their relationship, Charley Pride was already married to his wife of many years, Rozene, and the couple had three children. A paternity test later confirmed that Tyler was also Charley’s son.

“We made it through and had the best relationship that we could, per the circumstances,” said Tyler. “We still got to talk on the phone a lot and get to know each other that way, but it was difficult because of his situation and having to keep peace at home, as he put it over and over.”

Tyler said his father visited when he was able, and even after he turned 18 and Charley’s obligation to financially support him ended, Tyler said his father stayed involved in his life. However, when Charley died of COVID-19, Tyler said the family did not even tell him that his father was sick. In fact, Tyler’s name was not included in the obituary, and he said he was not allowed to attend the funeral.

Tyler also wasn’t named in Charley Pride ’s will, which Tyler has filed a lawsuit to contest. He says there was undue influence by Rozene over her husband, who’d publicly acknowledged mental health struggles.

“I don’t think he could imagine that this is going on right now and I don’t think it’s what he wanted. Because he always said he wanted his kids taken care of equally. Up until his death, that’s what I was told every time we talked,” said Tyler.

Rozene’s statement said, “Tyler does not have a valid claim, so he has resorted to a hurtful smear campaign. His attack on Charley hurts me and his other children deeply, but we all know that Charley was doing great physically and mentally and making his own decisions, until he was taken down by COVID. Much of what Tyler is saying about Charley Pride and me is a lie that Tyler hopes reporters will spread to grab headlines.”

However, Tyler says this isn’t a financial fight. It’s instead about honoring his father’s wishes and finally being recognized as his son.

“He is my dad and I’m proud to be able to tell that part of the story because I am part of his story,” said Tyler.

Reference: 5 NBC DFW (June 11, 2021) “Charley Pride’s ‘Secret’ Son Contests Will”

 

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Do Most Cases Of Dementia Go Undiagnosed?

New research from a nationwide survey of about 6 million Americans aged 65 and older shows that 91% of people with cognitive impairment consistent with dementia didn’t have a formal medical diagnosis of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.

HealthDay News’ recent article entitled “Most cases of dementia in U.S. seniors go undiagnosed, study says” reports that when other people — generally, family members — responded to the survey, the rate fell to around 75%, which is still significant. That’s according to the study’s co-author Sheria Robinson-Lane, a gerontologist at the University of Michigan School of Nursing, in Ann Arbor.

Rates of non-diagnosis varied by race, gender and education. As an example, Black seniors had a higher rate (93%) than other racial groups, according to the report published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.

“There is a large disparity in dementia-related treatment and diagnosis among Black older adults, who are often diagnosed much later in the disease trajectory compared to other racial and ethnic groups,” Robinson-Lane said in a university news release.

Men, at 99.7%, were more likely to report no diagnosis than women (90.2%). In addition, those who didn’t graduate from high school had a higher estimated rate (93.5%) than those with at least a high school education (91%), the findings showed.

Higher education is often linked to greater wealth and more access to resources that affect both dementia risk and disease progression, Robinson-Lane said. There’s also evidence that education level may affect results on thinking and memory — “cognitive” — tests.

Robinson-Lane commented that the findings are particularly relevant now because people with dementia have higher risk for COVID-19 hospitalization and death.

COVID-19 also causes long-lasting neurological impacts in some individuals—perhaps increasing their dementia risk. Dementia screening also isn’t a routine part of annual well visits for older adults.

“Now more than ever, these routine screenings and assessments are really critical,” Robinson-Lane said. “I think it’s particularly important to have some baseline information available to providers of patients over 65.”

Co-author Ryan McGrath, an assistant professor of health, nutrition and exercise sciences at North Dakota State University in Fargo, said evaluating seniors’ thinking skills is critical.

“We recommend that health care providers screen for low cognitive functioning during routine health assessments, when possible,” McGrath said. “A telemedicine option may reduce clinic time and expand reach.”

Reference: HealthDay News (June 29, 2021) “Most cases of dementia in U.S. seniors go undiagnosed, study says”

 

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Britney Spears – What Is the Process of Conservatorship?

The headlines surrounding Britney Spears’ fight against her father’s conservatorship (also known as guardianship) have kept the issue in the public eye. It’s how her father controls her finances and her life, dating back to 2008 when she suffered a very public mental health crisis. Her $60 million fortune is controlled by her father Jamie Spears, according to the article “Britney Spears Is Under Conservatorship. Here’s How That’s Supposed to Work” from npr.com. In this case, only her father has the ability to negotiate business opportunities and other financial arrangements.

Britney Spears made a passionate plea before a Los Angeles Superior Court judge to end the conservatorship, saying she is exploited, unable to sleep, depressed and cries daily.

Her conservatorship was set up because of the court’s agreement in 2008 with her father that she was no longer able to manage her own affairs. The judge appointed Jamie Spears, known as the “conservator” to care for another adult (the “conservatee”), who is deemed to be unable to care for themselves.

The conservatee does not lose all rights. They may still take part in important decisions affecting their property and way of life. They have a right to be treated with understanding and respect, and they have basic human rights. However, the court is saying that decisions about where to live and how to support the person need to be made by someone else. This is an extreme situation and is usually done only as a last resort. Once the court has appointed a conservatorship, only a court can lift it.

Conservatorships are usually used for people with a severe cognitive impairment or older people with severe dementia. Guardianships are also appointed for individuals with severe developmental disabilities. Spears is not the typical person under conservatorship. In the last 13 years, she has released albums, judged on The X Factor and earned an estimated $148 million performing in Las Vegas. Spears told the court she should not be in a conservatorship, if she can work and provide money and pay other people.

Many reforms to guardianship laws have taken place, including one principle that guardianship should only extend to the areas of the person’s life they are not able to manage. However, the Spears’ conservatorship includes every aspect of her personal affairs, as well as her property management.

Individuals under guardianship don’t select their guardian, but they may in some instances make recommendations and requests. The court is supposed to give serious consideration to their requests. The court does not seem to be recognizing this or other changes in Britney Spears’ case. She has been asking since 2014 for her father to be removed from his prime role in the conservatorship, and in 2020 she asked the court to suspend her father from his role entirely.

Family members are usually named as guardians, but there can be bankers, or professional guardians named. A wealth management company was added to Spears’ conservatorship in recent months as a co-conservator, but her father remains in charge of all aspects of her life.

Ending a guardianship is difficult, unless the guardianship has been set up for a specific length of time. If there’s a lot of money involved, things can get complicated. The guardian may not agree to steps to modify the guardianship because they will lose income. There’s a real conflict of interest in this case, as Spears’ father is also her business manager.

There is a trend towards avoiding guardianship and having a person or a handful of people who can help with decision making, while permitting the person to be involved in some way. However, the Britney Spears case is unlike any conservatorship case.

Reference: npr.com (June 24, 2021) “Britney Spears Is Under Conservatorship. Here’s How That’s Supposed to Work”

 

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Medicare Surprises Do Exist

CNBC’s recent article entitled “Here are 3 Medicare surprises that can cost you thousands every year” reports that about 62.6 million people—most of whom are age 65+— are enrolled in Medicare. Most pay no premium for Part A (hospital coverage) because they have at least a 10-year work history of paying into the system via payroll taxes.

As far as Part B (outpatient care) and Part D (prescription drug coverage), a senior may see some medicare surprise premium costs, no matter if you stay with original Medicare (Parts A and B) or choose to get your benefits through an Advantage Plan (Part C).

  1. Higher premiums for higher income. About 7% (4.3 million) of Medicare enrollees pay more than the standard premiums for Parts B and D for income-related monthly adjustment amounts, or IRMAAs, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. This starts at modified adjusted gross income of more than $88,000. It goes up at higher income thresholds. For example, a single taxpayer with income between $88,000 and $111,000 would pay an extra $59.40 per month for Part B on top of the standard premium of $148.50, or $207.90 total. Note that these IRMAAs don’t gently phase in within each income bracket. If you earn a dollar above the income thresholds, the surcharge applies in full force. Generally, these extra charges are calculated by your tax return from two years earlier. You can also request that the Social Security Administration reconsider the surcharges, if your income has dropped since that you filed that tax return.
  2. Your spouse’s income counts against you. The IRMAAs aren’t based on your own income. For example, if you have retired but your spouse is still working, and your joint tax return is a modified adjusted gross income of $176,000 or higher, you would be subject to IRMAAs.
  3. If you sign up late, you’ll pay a penalty. Sign up for Medicare during a seven-month window that starts three months before your 65th birthday month and ends three months after it. However, if you meet an exception — i.e., you or your spouse have qualifying group insurance at a company with 20 or more employees — you can put off enrolling. Workers at big employers often sign up for Part A and wait on Part B until they lose their other coverage. When this happens, they generally get eight months to enroll. Note that the rules are different for companies with fewer than 20 employees, whose workers must sign up when first eligible. For each full year that you should have been enrolled in Part B but were not, you could face paying 10% of the monthly Part B standard premium ($148.50 for 2021). The amount is added to your monthly premium for as long as you are enrolled in Medicare.

For Part D prescription drug coverage, the late-enrollment penalty is 1% of the monthly national base premium ($33.06 in 2021) for each full month that you should have had coverage but didn’t. This Part B penalty also lasts as long as you have drug coverage.

Reference: CNBC (June 21, 2021) “Here are 3 Medicare surprises that can cost you thousands every year”

 

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Seller’s Residency Certificate – Will My Children Pay Taxes, If I Give Them My Home?

Seller’s Residency Certificate – In a general warranty deed, a seller states that the transfer amount is one dollar and notarizes it. It is then sent to the county clerk. However, in this New Jersey example, the deed was sent back because a Seller’s Residency Certification form was required.

There is often confusion about the right method of transferring a deed and the potential consequences. When a home is transferred as a gift, property taxes may not be imposed, depending on state law. This is known as a homestead tax exemption for property taxes. The homestead exemption is generally a dollar amount or percentage of the property value that’s excluded, when calculating property taxes.

The amount or percentage depends on the state. Every state also has specific eligibility requirements for the exemption. In some states, every homeowner gets the tax exemption, while in other states, eligibility depends on income level, property value, age or if you’re disabled or a veteran.

Nj.com’s recent article entitled “Will changing this home’s deed cost us any money?” explains that in New Jersey, the Seller’s Residency Certificate addresses whether there should be income tax withheld, or whether an estimated tax payment should be made, in connection with the transfer.

In Georgia, to be granted a homestead exemption, an individual must occupy the home, and the home is considered their legal residence for all purposes. However, those away from their home because of health reasons will not be denied homestead exemption in the state.

When the transfer appears to be a gift in the New Jersey example, no withholding or estimated taxes should be required.

However, it’s important to understand that transfers of real property for consideration of less than $100 also shouldn’t trigger a realty transfer fee. If there’s a mortgage encumbering the property, and if you will assume that mortgage obligation, the amount of the outstanding mortgage balance would be treated as consideration.

However, if there is no mortgage encumbering the property and presuming that the transfer in the example above is from the mother-in-law to her daughter and her husband is a gift, there should be no realty transfer fee charged on the transfer.

Note in New Jersey, when the deed is re-record, it should include, in addition to the Seller’s Residency Certificate, an Affidavit of Consideration.

Reference: nj.com (April 24, 2021) “Will changing this home’s deed cost us any money?”

 

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Some Surgeries are Especially Risky for Seniors

A team of researchers created a list of 277 risky procedures for older adults. Considerable’s recent article entitled “These 10 surgeries are considered “uniquely high risk” for older adults” explains that the study, published in JAMA Surgery, generated the list by using admissions data of patients 65 years of age and older. They found 10 surgeries to be especially problematic for older patients:

  1. Adrenal gland removal (adrenalectomy). This is the removal of one or both of the adrenal glands. These glands produce hormones that are necessary for daily bodily functions, but tumors can form on the glands and cause increased hormone production. If this happens, the gland(s) needs to be removed. The Cleveland Clinic says the usual recovery time after this surgery is 2-6 weeks, and the risks can include blood clots, infections and high blood pressure.
  2. Plaque buildup removal from carotid arteries (carotid endarterectomy). This procedure removes plaque buildup from inside a carotid artery in the neck. This surgery is typically preventative of a stroke and removes blockages that might trigger one. The risks include clotting, stroke or death. However, taking anti-clotting medicines before and after a carotid endarterectomy can decrease these risks.
  3. Arm blood-vessel replacement (peripheral vascular bypass surgery). Blood vessel replacement in the arm improves blood flow when an artery becomes narrowed or blocked. A blood vessel from another part of the body or a synthetic blood vessel is used to replace the damaged blood vessel. Risks of this procedure can include irregular heartbeat, infection and death.
  4. Abdominal vein resection or replacement. When a blood vessel causes tissue injury in the abdomen, part of the tissue might need to be removed or replaced. Risks include pulmonary embolism, infection and excess bleeding.
  5. Varicose vein removal. These veins form in the legs, when the valves in the veins aren’t functioning properly. If a senior is experiencing pain, blood clots, or bleeding, varicose vein removal may be suggested. The risks include nerve injury, heavy bleeding and infection.
  6. High gastric bypass. This weight loss surgery alters the way in which the stomach and small intestine handle food. There are a number of criteria that must be met to receive this procedure. It can pose major risks and complications, such as malnutrition, perforation of the stomach or intestines and dumping syndrome (aka when food gets “dumped” directly from the stomach pouch into the small intestine without being digested).
  7. Proctopexy (rectal prolapse surgery). Seniors with stool leakage, inability to control their bowel movements (fecal incontinence), or obstructed bowel movements may require a proctopexy. This procedure helps put the rectum back in place. Risks can include damage to nearby nerves and organs, narrowing (stricture) of the anal opening and development of new or worsened constipation.
  8. Bile duct excision. When a tumor is blocking the flow of bile to a bile duct, it may be removed. Nausea, jaundice, or a temperature of 101° F (38.3° C) or higher are potential risks of this surgery.
  9. A urinary reconstruction technique. Sometimes an individual’s urinary bladder is removed due to cancer, a non-working bladder, or another medical reason. This procedure creates a new way for urine to exit the body when a bladder isn’t present. One risk of the procedure is urine backing up into the kidneys, causing infections, stone formation, or organ damage over time.
  10. Ureter repair. If a senior’s ureter is injured (scar tissue forms after an accident or surgery), more surgery might be required to repair it. Chest pain, blood clots and trouble urinating can be complications that follow this procedure.

Reference: Considerable (May 1, 2021) “These 10 surgeries are considered “uniquely high risk” for older adults”

 

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New Rules for Burial at Arlington National Cemetery

In testimony before the House Appropriations Committee, Karen Durham-Aguilera, Executive Director of Army National Military Cemeteries and Arlington National Cemetery, said she expects revisions to those rules in coming months, but would not say whether that would tighten or loosen the proposed eligibility restrictions.

Military Times’ recent article entitled “As space dwindles, final rules on burial eligibility for Arlington Cemetery expected this fall,” reports that new eligibility rules for Arlington Cemetery would exclude most non-combat veterans.

“We continue to explore all viable options to ensure Arlington National Cemetery continues to honor our nation’s heroes for generations to come,” she said. “It’s really an impossible problem for us. The eligible population is more than 22 million … currently today, we have less than 85,000 spaces.”

The proposed changes are aimed at extending the use of the cemetery for several more decades.

In 2019, Army officials suggested restricting all below-ground burial sites to combat heroes, battle casualties and a small pool of notable dignitaries. Other veterans would be eligible for placement of cremated remains in above-ground structures at the cemetery. However, many veteran groups were against this, saying it could upset numerous families’ end-of-life plans and risks the perception that certain military experiences are more valuable than others.

About 400,000 individuals are buried at Arlington now, and roughly 7,000 individuals are interred at the cemetery annually.  those numbers were reduced last year due to COVID restrictions.

The expansion plans are expected to add about 80,000 new burial spaces to the cemetery.

“Without changes to eligibility, Arlington National Cemetery will run out of space for new burials in the early 2040s or the mid-2060s with the construction of the Southern Expansion project, even for those service members who are killed in action or are recipients of the Medal of Honor.”

With the eligibility changes, officials estimate the site can remain an active cemetery for more than 150 years.

These proposed rule changes for Arlington wouldn’t change the veterans cemetery sites run by the Department of Veterans Affairs across the country.

Reference: Military Times (May 5, 2021) “As space dwindles, final rules on burial eligibility for Arlington Cemetery expected this fall”

 

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Did Bill Gates and Wife Sign Pre-Nup?

The tabloid secured a copy of Bill Gates divorce filings. The papers show that the couple signed a separation contract they told the court to enforce, rather than a prenuptial agreement.

Entrepreneur’s recent article entitled “Bill and Melinda Gates Never Signed a Prenup. Here’s How They’ll Divide Their Assets Instead” says that a prenuptial agreement is created before the parties get married and states what each party will retain, should a divorce occur.

By contrast, a separation contract is a “postnuptial agreement” that’s signed when the two parties are thinking about divorce but are legally married. A separation contract can direct the division of property and address spousal support, but it can’t include any terms on child support and custody.

According to the divorce filings, the couple has agreed to divide real estate property, personal property, debts and liabilities, as “set forth in our separation contract.”

Spousal support “is not needed,” they wrote.

“This marriage is irretrievably broken,” Melinda wrote in her request for a divorce. “We ask the court to dissolve our marriage and find that our marital community ended on the date stated in our separation contract.”

The couple announced their divorce in a statement:

“After a great deal of thought and a lot of work on our relationship, we have made the decision to end our marriage,” the two said in a joint statement. “Over the last 27 years, we have raised three incredible children and built a foundation that works all over the world to enable all people to lead healthy, productive lives. We continue to share a belief in that mission and will continue our work together at the foundation, but we no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in this next phase of our lives. We ask for space and privacy for our family as we begin to navigate this new life.”

The couple first met at a work event in New York in 1987 and married seven years later on New Year’s Day in Hawaii.

They have three children together: Jennifer, Rory and Phoebe.

A court is expected to look at the Gates’ divorce filings this fall.

Reference: Entrepreneur (May 4, 2021) “Bill and Melinda Gates Never Signed a Prenup. Here’s How They’ll Divide Their Assets Instead.”

 

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Why Is Billionaire Estee Lauder Heir Kicking Baby Mama Out of Mansion

New York socialite Taylor Stein is the mother of a love child with the Estee Lauder heir, William Lauder. They met at a party at Lauder’s Aspen Colorado mansion in 2000, when he was married to his wife Karen, who is the mother of two of his daughters.

Celebrity Net Worth’s recent article entitled “Estee Lauder Heir Embroiled In Legal Drama With Baby Mama” says that Lauder and Stein’s affair began a year later and in 2005, she got pregnant.

Lauder reportedly asked Stein to terminate the pregnancy because he was in the middle of a contentious divorce from Karen. Their marriage ultimately ended in 2009, but Stein got pregnant again in 2006 and their daughter was born in May 2007. Lauder moved Stein and his baby daughter to Aspen to keep his personal life out of the limelight.

Lauder is the grandson of Estee Lauder and is the executive chairman of Estee Lauder.

Taylor Stein is the daughter of the late Howard Stein, who was a New York City nightclub impresario behind 80s hot spots Au Bar and Xenon. Her grandfather Ruby Stein was a loan shark who was murdered. His headless body was found floating in Jamaica Bay in 1977.

Stein and Lauder have had a difficult relationship for years. In November 2012, Stein was arrested after she allegedly punched Lauder in the face during a fight they had on a street in Los Angeles. She pled guilty to a domestic assault charge and was sentenced to 19 days of community service.

Stein reportedly signed an agreement with Lauder in 2007 that would give her one million dollars every year provided she didn’t publicly disclose who the father of her child was and that she stayed at least 100 yards away from any member of the Lauder family in New York, Aspen and Palm Beach.

Their battle was recently reignited in late 2020, when their 13-year-old daughter put a post on social media saying her parents were divorced. Lauder saw this as a violation of the 2007 agreement. Stein is now accusing Lauder of backing out of their arrangement to support them. She also allegedly accused Lauder of a campaign of harassment against her, including hiring private detectives to watch her.

In 2018, she filed a complaint that Lauder was refusing to honor their agreement and was trying to evict her, their teenaged daughter and the 10-year-old son Stein adopted from their 6,000-square-foot, six-bedroom, five-bathroom home.

Stein and Lauder appeared to have reached a settlement in the fall of 2020, until the social media post irked Lauder and sent him fuming again.

Reference: Celebrity Net Worth (March 30, 2021) “Estee Lauder Heir Embroiled In Legal Drama With Baby Mama”

 

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Did Pop Entertainer Pink Change Estate Plan because of COVID-19?

Pink and her four-year-old son, Jameson, tested positive for the virus in March 2020, but her husband, Carey Hart, and daughter, 9-year-old Willow, did not contract the coronavirus.

MSN’s recent article entitled “Pink Reveals She Rewrote Her Will Because She Thought ‘It Was Over’ Amid COVID-19 Battle” reports that the entertainer did change her will.

“It was really, really bad, and I rewrote my will,” she said. “… At the point where I thought it was over for us, I called my best friend and I said, ‘I just need you to tell Willow how much I loved her.’ It was really, really scary and really bad. ”

The experience inspired her single, “All I Know So Far.” Pink described the song as “a letter to my daughter.” The single was released May 7, and a documentary and album of the same name will follow on May 21.

“As a parent, you think about, ‘What am I leaving for my kid? What am I teaching them? Are they going to make it in this world, this crazy world that we live in now? What do I need to tell them if this is the last time that I get to tell them anything?'” she said. “So, that was kind of the song.”

Pink first announced that she and Jameson were fighting the coronavirus in April 2020. That same month, she described “the scariest thing” she has ever been through on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, sharing that her son was the first one to get sick.

“[It] started with a fever for him and it would come and go, and he would have stomach pains and diarrhea and chest pains and then a headache, sore throat,” she said. “It sort of was just all over the place. Every day was just some new symptom. His fever stayed it did not go. It just started going up and up and up and up and then at one point it was at 103.”

As for herself, Pink said, “I woke up in the middle of the night and couldn’t breathe and I needed to get to a nebulizer for the first time in 30 years. I have this inhaler that I use, this rescue inhaler, and I couldn’t function without it, and that’s when I started to get really scared.”

In a December 2020 Instagram post, Pink, whose real name is Alecia Beth Moore, called 2020 a “poop sandwich of a year.” She also had a staph infection and a broken ankle.

See your estate planning attorney about changing your will based on current events.

Reference: MSN (May 4, 2021) “Pink Reveals She Rewrote Her Will Because She Thought ‘It Was Over’ Amid COVID-19 Battle”

 

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