The passing of television personality Casey Kasem was a somber one that had been coming for several months. Suffering from Lewy body disease, Kasem’s condition had progressed to the point where he could no longer walk on his own and was unable to speak. But, as some of our readers already know, this wasn’t the only tragic thing about Kasem’s case.
A few of our more frequent readers may remember our May 14 post that highlighted the family feud that had erupted between Kasem’s eldest children and their stepmother. At the center of the feud was the dispute over who should be able to make medical decisions for the ailing celebrity: Kasem’s wife or his children? Earlier this month, the question was answered when a Los Angeles County judge reinstated Kasem’s health care directive that was signed in November 2007. But did litigation end with Kasem’s passing?
It might not have. According to several sources, Kasem’s wife has long contended that this family feud has been about Kasem’s fortune rather than his health care. Whether you believe this or not makes no difference, but it does raise an important question: what becomes of Kasem’s fortune? Unfortunately, despite all of the coverage concerning Kasem’s health care, little has been said about how his fortune will be split.
It’s possible that much of his fortune could go to his wife of 33 years. The remaining fortune would likely then be split between Kasem’s children — three from his first marriage and one from his second. But based on the stepmother’s assertions, it’s possible that when Kasem’s will goes into probate, it could become a source of contention. This could be particularly true if any changes were made after he became ill. Kasem’s children might dispute these changes, especially if they appear to have been made specifically to cut them out of the estate. Whether this will happen or not remains to be seen.
Sources: CNN, “Casey Kasem’s daughter has the power, but will she use it?” Alan Duke and Ed Payne, June 12, 2014