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Elder Planning Isn't Just For The Elderly

Family fights for control of late director’s estate

Director John Singleton was well-known for many Hollywood accomplishments, which included the movies “Boyz n the Hood” and “2 Fast 2 Furious”. In the last several weeks, Singleton, who was only 51 years old, suffered a stroke that initially rendered him in a coma.

While he fought for his life in the hospital, Singleton’s mother and children fought in court over the control of his affairs.

Singleton did not have a spouse and apparently did not have any legal documents in place that would grant authority to others to make decisions on his behalf in the event that he became incapacitated. With several business projects under consideration and substantial personal wealth, the careful management of his affairs became an important matter when his health turned and left him unable to maintain his own control.

Sadly, Singleton’s family members elected to take him off of life support when it became clear that the director would not recover from the harm that the stroke inflicted upon his body. He passed away with his mother in control of his affairs and a possible rift in his family regarding how different members felt his estate should be controlled.

While no one wants to think about experiencing a tragedy as monumental as the one that afflicted Singleton and his family, it is a sad reality that each day individuals lose their capacity to care for their own needs, requirng the support of others to manage their health and money. Powers of attorney are legal tools that New York residents may wish to learn more about to protect them and their loved ones from a similar problem in the future.

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