Prince apparently had left no will, and a corporate trust company has temporarily taken over his estate as his surviving sister and five half-siblings sort out their inheritance rights.
Without a will, it’s customary for the remaining assets to be evenly split between the heirs, said Minnesota-based attorney Stephen Hopkins.
‘This (case) is going to be open for some time, probably for some years,” Hopkins told the Daily Mail.
Tyka Nelson, Prince’s sister, as well as his half-siblings John, Norrine, Sharon, Alfred, and Omarr were listed in a probate document Nelson filed in court, according to TMZ.
If he left no will or trust, divvying up his fortune could get complicated, said Susan Link, a top Minnesota probate lawyer. Link said attorneys will need to get Prince’s siblings to agree on asset distribution, and that it could get extremely complicated if they don’t.
“They will try to set the family down,” said Link, who isn’t involved in the case. “They’re not going to try to light the match and get a big fire going and get everybody fighting about this.”
The value of his estate isn’t known, although estimates have ranged from $300 to $800 million. Prince made hundreds of millions of dollars for record companies, concert venues, and others, and the outpouring of grief and nostalgia after his death prompted fans to buy 2.3 million of his songs in just three days.
Prince also owned a dozen properties in Minnesota, most of it undeveloped land and some houses for relatives, worth about $27 million, according to public records. He also sold more than 100 million albums, and concert industry magazine Pollstar reported that in the years Prince’s tours topped the charts—10 years with over four decades performing—they raked in $225 million in ticket sales.
Judge Kevin Eide granted a request from Prince’s sister to appoint Bremer Trust as special administrator, giving the company authority to manage and supervise Prince’s assets and identify his heirs. Eide said Prince had no appointed personal representative but had substantial assets and owned businesses that require immediate attention and ongoing management.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.