Here’s one celebrity trend you should avoid: having no will.
Aretha Franklin, who died Thursday in her Detroit home after a long battle with pancreatic cancer, did not have one in place, according to published reports. She was 76.
Her four sons on Tuesday filed a document with the Oakland County Probate Court in Michigan that lists themselves as interested parties in Franklin’s estate. A niece also asked the court to appoint her as personal representative of the estate.
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Aretha Franklin left no will. Here's why you should plan for your death.
> When you die without a will — called "dying intestate" — the courts in your state determine where your assets go.
> If you have no plan in place for your minor children and they are left parentless, a judge gets to decide who will be their guardian.
> It's also important to name people to several key roles, including an executor of your will, and powers of attorney for both health care and your financial affairs if you become incapacitated while still living.
Sarah O'Brien | @sarahtgobrien Published 12:52 PM ET Wed, 22 Aug 2018 Updated 1:37 PM ET Wed, 22 Aug 2018