A Minnesota judge has denied a request by Prince’s heirs to limit Comerica Bank & Trust powers over the administration of the late singer’s estate.
As we previously reported, three years after the death of music icon at age 57, his massive estate, believed to be worth hundreds of millions, remains in limbo as it is “still unsettled, still not officially valued and still not disbursed to the heirs, his six siblings,” USA Today writes.
Prince’s heirs — Tyka Nelson, his full sister, and his half-siblings, Norrine Nelson, Sharon Nelson, John Nelson, Alfred Jackson and Omarr Baker — claim administrators have spent $45 million on probate-related administrative expenses, including $10 million in legal fees. They also claim the estate still owes $31 million in unpaid taxes that continues to collect interest.
The siblings are trying to take more control over the estate so they filed a petition earlier this month to limit the power of Comerica Bank & Trust. But Judge Kevin Eide ruled that the heirs presented “little or no specificity” and until they come up with some “viable alternative” the Comerica arrangement will stay in place, Billboard reports.
“While the Court certainly appreciates the Heirs’ concerns with respect to preserving estate assets, minimizing estate exposes and planning for distributions, those concerns are more effectively addressed through discourse and mediation,” Eide ruled.
The judge said while he understands that the heirs want to reduce expenses, their motions have the rick of “significantly increasing Estate expenses.”
He said reducing Comerica’s power would “create a vacuum of uncertainty” and “may result in the loss of entertainment deal opportunities, which are necessary to raise needed funds to pay estate taxes and lead to the distribution of funds to the Heirs.”
He also noted that Comerica agreed to reduce its monthly compensation from $125,000 to $110,00 (not including expenses).
The judge also ordered the bank to keep the heirs informed of the exact amount of the outstanding tax liability.
A statement from Sharon Nelson reads: “We are continued to be dismayed and disappointed in the Judge Eide partially to Comerica and their advisors who have done a poor job managing this estate.”