Most of us choose to let things slide when we’re feeling unwell, putting off the growing pile of washing in the laundry or the dust building up on the window ledge but Aretha Franklin reportedly took things to a new level by forgetting to bank close to $1 million worth of cheques before her death
Though it understandable to push jobs to the side during sickness, the talented singer went one step further with multiple reports claiming $988,656.17 in un-cashed checks have been found. According newly filed court documents this apparently included one totalling a massive $702,711.90 from Sound Exchange and Screen Writers Guild and others to her publishing company, Springtime Publishing, for the amount of $285,944.27.
While the discovery hasn’t caused much commotion for the family with one of Aretha’s sons reportedly tracking down one of the banks which issued a cheque, the rest of the singer’s financial matters have been much more confusing. Although it is regularly reminded to people to create wills as soon as possible it was initially claimed Aretha didn’t have one at all.
Shortly after her death it was revealed by multiple news outlets that the singer left with no legal instruction as to who should inherit her wealth in the event of her death. Like other family situations when wills are not present, this apparently created friction among the family.
As a result, it was claimed that her estate would be divided equally between her four sons – Clarence, Edward, Ted and Kecalf – in accordance with Michigan state law. However, back in May it was reported three handwritten wills were found in Aretha’s home, squashing the previous claims.
Two of the documents were reportedly found in a locked cabinet after a key was discovered, while the third was mysteriously placed in a notebook under cushions, 7 News reports. The singer’s lawyer confirmed to news outlets that the wills were discovered early in May with the earliest dated to 2010 and the most recent, found beneath the cushions, apparently compiled in 2014. They reportedly leave the ‘Respect’ singer’s assets to family members.
The latest news of the un-cashed cheques comes just over a year after the singer passed away at her home in Detroit on August 16, at the age of 76, following a battle with pancreatic cancer. In a statement at the time her family described it as “one of the darkest moments of our lives”.
“We have lost the matriarch and rock of our family. The love she had for her children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews and cousins knew no bounds,” they said. “We have been deeply touched by the incredible outpouring of love and support we have received from close friends, supporters and fans all around the world.”
They added: “Thank you for your compassion and prayers. We have felt your love for Aretha and it brings us comfort to know that her legacy will live on. As we grieve, we ask that you respect our privacy during this time.”
Her passing also triggered an outpouring of grief across the globe, with many of the music industry’s biggest names paying tribute to the ‘Queen of Soul’. Paul McCartney said on Twitter: “Let’s all take a moment to give thanks for the beautiful life of Aretha Franklin, the Queen of our souls, who inspired us all for many many years.”
Im with the Winner!! The beautiful @camila_cabello ! So proud of her! 🌈💕🎉. And just to clarify: I was asked to present video of the year by MTV! And then they asked me to share any anecdotes I had in my career connected to Aretha Franklin! I shared a part of my journey and thankedAretha for inspiring me along the way. I did not intend to do a tribute to her! That would be impossible in 2 minutes with all the noise and tinselof an award show.I could never do her justice in this context or environment. Unfortunately most people have short attention spans, and are so quick to judge.I love Aretha! R.E.S.P.E.C.T. 🙏🏼. I Love Camilla!Congrats!I LOVE my dress!AND. Ilove-L O V E!! ♥️ and there is nothing anyone can say or do that will change that.#vmas #postivevibes
Singer Elton John said: “The whole world will miss her but will always rejoice in her remarkable legacy. The Queen is dead. Long live the Queen.” Meanwhile, Madonna also paid tribute to the ‘R-E-S-P-E-C-T’ singer on stage at the MTV Video Music Awards , however her words were slammed by fans who criticised Madge for making the tender moment “about her”.
The 60-year-old ‘Like A Virgin’ star hit back though and defended her tribute, saying: “I was asked to present video of the year by MTV! And then they asked me to share any anecdotes I had in my career connected to Aretha Franklin.
“I did not intend to do a tribute to her! That would be impossible in 2 minutes with all the noise and tinsel of an award show. I could never do her justice in this context or environment.”