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Legal Battle Over Prince’s $156 Million Estate Concludes After Six Years

The extensive legal battle over the Prince’s estate has finally ended after six years. The estate will be split among the talent management company and independent music publisher Primary Wave and the three oldest heirs or their families.

When Prince died in 2016, he had no will in place; and in the time since his death, the estate’s administrator Comerica Bank & Trust and the IRS agreed his estate–including real estate holdings and catalog of unreleased recordings–held a value of $156 million. A Minnesota judge signed off on the agreement during a hearing on Friday, July 29.

The value of the estate was agreed upon by the lawyers of six of Prince’s heirs, two of whom have died over the six years since Prince’s death. The look into the value of Prince’s estate came six months after three of Prince’s heirs made deals with Primary Wave to sell their stakes in their brother’s estate, including royalties from masters, writer’s share, name and likeness and Paisley Park property. However, Prince’s three oldest heirs decided not to sell their shares to Primary Wave, leaving them with the single largest share but not a majority stake with 42 percent.

“Prince was an iconic superstar and this transfer out of the court’s jurisdiction puts in place professional, skilled management,” Primary Wave said Friday, according to Billboard. “When we announced our acquisition of the additional expectancy interests in the estate last year bringing our ownership interest to 50%, our goal was to protect and grow Prince’s incomparable legacy. With the distribution of estate assets, we look forward to a strong and productive working relationship.”

As soon as February 2023, the estate will be split among Primary Wave and the three oldest heirs or their families. At Friday’s hearing, Prince’s lawyer L. Londell McMillan, who now represents the three oldest heirs, said, “It has been a long six years.”




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