Gregory S. DuPont
John Lennon: The Eggman
A worldwide outpouring of shock and grief followed the tragic death of John Lennon aged just 40 years old. He was shot and fatally wounded on December 8th, 1980 outside his home in New York City.
The famed singer, songwriter, musician, and peace activist achieved worldwide fame as the founder, co-songwriter, vocalist, and guitarist of the Beatles. Lennon’s songwriting partnership with Paul McCartney remains one of the most successful in history.
Lennon divorced his first wife, Cynthia in 1968. They had one son together, Julian, who was 5 years old at the time of the divorce. He later went on to have a son with Yoko Ono, Sean.
At the time of his death, John Lennon’s estate was estimated at around $800 Million. Ono was named as the executor and the majority of the estate passed to her, including full control over his original song rights and his image. Lennon also created a revocable living trust during his lifetime and his Last Will and Testament pours over the bulk of his probate estate to his living trust.
No provision was made for Julian in the will. He was left £50,000 (around $67,000) in a trust that he would receive once he turned 25. The bitterness between Lennon’s ex-wife and Yoko Ono is well documented, however many believe that Ono influenced John to favor their son, Sean, over Julian. This was the case Julian’s attorneys put forward on his behalf against his father’s estate. A settlement was eventually reached in 1996, 16 years later, with Julian reportedly receiving £20 Million (around $27 Million) to drop his claims.
Yoko Ono "retired from public life," with her last formal appearance being in 2017, apparently due to an unspecified illness. Since her retirement, Sean Ono Lennon has been given full control of John Lennon's estate. This is certainly a huge undertaking. Yoko is the daughter of a wealthy Japanese banker and a savvy businesswoman. There is no doubt that Lennon’s estate continued to grow while under her control.
Forbes reported Lennon’s estate to have earned more than $14 million in 2019 alone and Lennon’s work is still of interest to many, making the former Beatle the world’s 7th top-earning dead celebrity.
It’s not the first time we’ve heard about family members being disinherited, whether through oversight or neglect. By listening to the guidance and advice given by experienced estate planning attorneys, you can avoid family feuds and ensure that your estate plan is executed smoothly.
If you would like to learn more, about your estate and trust planning options contact The Law Offices of DuPont and Blumenstiel at (614) 389-9711 or visit the website to schedule a consultation today