Supreme Court Takes Anna Nicole Smith Estate Case…Again

2:15 pm Uncategorized

This week the United States Supreme Court agreed to hear an appeal from Anna Nicole Smith’s estate in yet another round of legal wrangling over the late celebrity’s inheritance from her Texas billionaire husband.

Smith and Texas tycoon Howard Marshall were married in 1994 – when she was 26 and he was 89 — after meeting at an adult club where she was a dancer.  The marriage lasted until Marshall died 14 months later.  Although Marshall did not mention Smith in his will or any trust documents, she claimed that his son – Pierce Marshall — used undue influence during the last weeks of his life to make sure she did not inherit.  She also claimed that Marshall promised her a share of the assets he earned while they were married.

Although all the major figures in the case are now deceased — Pierce Marshall died in 2006 and Smith died in 2007 – the heirs continue to litigate over the estimated $1.6 billion estate.  Smith left a three-year-old daughter as her only heir.

Litigation over the Marshall estate is in its second decade and this is the second time it has reached the U.S. Supreme Court.  Originally, a Texas probate court said Smith was not entitled to anything from the estate.  Later, a U.S. bankruptcy court awarded her $474 million – which a federal appeals court in California then dismissed.  That led to Smith’s first U.S. Supreme Court appearance, where the justices ordered the Federal Appeals Panel in California to reconsider its ruling.  The California appeals court did so in March of 2010 – and rejected her claim for inheritance.

Let our Costa Mesa law offices help you get started by contacting us today.

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