Naomi Judd’s decision to name husband Larry Strickland as executor of her will isn’t unusual, but it could be seen as a slight to daughters Wynonna and Ashley Judd, a legal expert tells Page Six exclusively.
“It is customary to name the spouse as the executor of the will. But giving up her daughters seems purposeful, like Naomi’s purposeful act,” attorney Holly Davis tells Page Six exclusively.
Naomi – Who died by suicide April 30 — named a 33-year-old man as executor of her estate, according to court documents obtained by Page Six on Monday.
Criminal defense attorney Jason Goldman tells Page Six that the District superstar was “probably advised” to choose his spouse over his two daughters because it would be “cleaner and less controversial.”
“Despite intentions to the contrary, wills tend to become difficult to interpret when they are too specific,” says Goldman. “When you then factor in the existence of multiple children, a longer, fragmented will is inevitably a recipe for misinterpretation and disaster.”
In her “Love Can Build a Bridge” will, the singer asks that her husband have “full authority and discretion” over any assets that are part of her estate “without any court approval” or permission from any beneficiary.
It is unclear whether Wynonna, 58, or Ashley, 54, are beneficiaries of their mother’s estate, as their names were not mentioned at all in the will.
However, Goldman clarifies that it neither confirms nor denies whether the two have trusts set up by their mother before her death.
“The will itself made no mention of Naomi’s hard assets, which may have already been given to the children in the transfer of property rights,” says a New York-based lawyer who did not personally work on Naomi’s will.
For any inheritance from the author of River of Time estimated assets of $25 millionGoldman says Strickland, 76, can “leave according to what he thinks Naomi would have wanted for the children” as executor.
But Davis notes that it’s “possible” that Naomi “has already taken care of them in her trusts, and maybe in pre-death gifts, but it’s worth noting.”
“Naomi Judd struggled with her mental health and depression, which ultimately led to her suicide – that much we know,” concluded the founder of Kirker Davis LLP. “However, without knowing if there is tension between her spouse and daughters, or if there are problems or tensions between her husband and daughters, we will find out in the coming days if there will be a probate through probate lawyers.”
in 2017 November 20 when she signed her will, the lawyer who drafted Naomi’s will did not respond to repeated requests for comment on the “grandpa” singer’s future mindset. Her publicist also declined to comment.
Naomi – Who experienced a lifelong and public battle with depression – died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Wynonna and Ashley commented having lost their mother to mental illnesshowever, the conversation related to the late singer’s will has not been discussed yet.
“If the daughters believe that Naomi has been treated inappropriately by her husband in the last months or years, and they claim that he fraudulently affected her will, it could result in a lawsuit on behalf of the daughters,” Davis said. says
Reps for Wynonna and Ashley did not return Page Six’s request for comment.