Lead singer, Ric Ocasek, of the pop hit machine of the 80’s, The Cars, cut his estranged model wife, Paulina Porizkova, out of his Will before he died. That’s the pair together in happier times:
What a band the Cars were. Remember that pool scene from Fast Times at Ridgemont High featuring Phoebe Cates? The Cars song, “Moving in Stereo” was cranking in the background. Side note – I still refer to the Vans black and white checkered shoes as Spicoli’s!
Ocasek died in September and had planned to divorce his wife. They have two kids together. He claimed that she “abandoned” him. I have a feeling this is going to get messy.
Ocasek was a brooding personality from all that I read and had a complicated scenario when it came to his estate planning. There were several good reasons he needed to plan properly and it sounds like he did have some level of a plan in place.
First off, the guy had six children from three different wives. I could stop right here and the case for estate planning would be closed. Are any of the kids minors? If so, then they would need their own trust with someone to look over it for them. How about his ex-wives? The Mom’s of his kids? Do they get anything? Are the Mom’s even in the kids’ lives? If no trust was set up for the kids, then you have someone in charge of the money with no rules on how to manage the funds. A situation like this is ripe for disaster.
Additionally, Ocasek made good money. Estimates put his wealth around $70 million dollars. You better believe there is going to be a “discussion” from all families as to who is entitled to what? Ocasek’s level of wealth may seem massive to most of us, but to quote my colleague and estate planning attorney, Brad Barth, “Everyone has an estate.” Meaning, you don’t need to be worth $70 million to see a benefit from a proper estate plan.
Our founder, Harry Barth, illustrates what your estate plan is all about in this creative way; “ You are the Director of your own play. The play is about your life and sitting on the stage are your family members and all of your assets. It’s a big stage. As the Director, you get to decide how each of your family members are involved in your life, now and at death. Likewise, you get to dictate how your hard earned assets are to be treated.” Estate planning is about taking control over your decisions. Without a proper plan in place, you give control to the court system and allow them to step in and become the Director of your play.
The celebrity estate planning stories are always fascinating to read about and many of them seem to come with salacious details. We certainly hope the surviving family members work it all out, but for us non- famous folks, estate planning (and asset protection) are no less important. Here’s an impactful question to ask yourself; “What would happen to my family and/or business if life threw me a curveball today?” It could be from a divorce, a car accident, a business partner break-up, unforeseen lawsuits, tax issues, health concerns, real estate issues or ??? Is your planning air tight and would it kick into action and function properly?
On a recent live webinar, I asked our expert estate and asset protection attorney, Brad Barth this question, “ Who Needs Estate Planning?” His answer pulled no punches and you can watch that short clip below…