Many people in Los Angeles may feel as though they do not need to dedicate their time and effort into planning their estates because they have little to pass on to beneficiaries. The fact that small estates are often able to avoid probate seems to support this assumption. However, one's estate goes beyond his or her liquid assets. His or her name, likeness, works or intellectual properties can bring in future revenue. The control over the use of such properties is exercised by one's estate, which requires that one have an executor and named beneficiaries who can benefit from their use.
If there were anyone that most would assume would not need to worry about estate matters, it would be Charles Manson. The infamous cult leader spent over 40 years in prison before dying last year, and the law prevents inmates from profiting from their criminal exploits. However, authorization over future documentaries and books would rest with Manson's estate, the control over which three parties are arguing in Los Angeles Superior Court. One the parties involved was pen-pals with Manson for years. He has a will in which Manson disinherits his biological heirs and names him as his beneficiary. Another man claiming to be a son Manson fathered during an orgy has a will supposedly given by Manson to a memorabilia collector in which he is named as the beneficiary. Yet another man (who court documents show as being Manson's actual grandson) is staking his claim to the estate as Manson's next of kin.
While many may question the motives and decorum of the parties involved in this case, each cites legal standards which back their claims. Those needing to fight for their positions in an estate may find an attorney to be a valuable ally in such a struggle.
Source: CBS Los Angeles "Beach Boys, Guns N' Roses Song Royalties Complicates Fight Over Charles Manson's Remains" Jan. 09, 2018