The death of Lisa Marie Presley revived the legal battle for Elvis's inheritance: who will keep his assets
The king of rock's daughter was his only heir, but her sudden death sparked a claim by her mother, Priscilla. The singer's ex-wife went to court to regain control of her daughter's assets
Priscilla Presley speaks during a public tribute to her daughter, singer Lisa Marie Presley, the only daughter of the "King of Rock 'n' Roll', Elvis Presley, at Graceland Mansion in Memphis, Tennessee, U.S., January 22, 2023. REUTERS/nikki boertman
Priscilla Presley has filed legal papers disputing who oversees her late daughter Lisa Marie Presley's estate.
The Los Angeles Superior Court filing last week questions the validity of a 2016 amendment to the Lisa Marie Presley Living Trust which removed Priscilla Presley and a former business manager as trustees and replaced them with Lisa Marie Presley's two eldest children, Riley Keough and Benjamin Keough, in the event she died or became incapacitated. Benjamin Keough died in 2020.
A living trust is a form of estate planning that allows a person to control their assets while they live, but distribute them if they die. Serves the function of a will if a separate will is not filed, as seems to be the case with Lisa Marie Presley.
Lisa Marie Presley, singer and only daughter of Elvis Presley, died in a California hospital at age 54 on January 12 after paramedics responded to a 911 call reporting a woman in cardiac arrest. The Los Angeles County coroner is investigating and has not yet provided a cause of death. She was buried at her family home, Graceland, on January 22.
FILE – Lisa Marie Presley with her childhood crib on display among other artifacts in the "Elvis Through His Daughter's Eyes" at Graceland in Memphis, Tenn., on Jan. 31, 2012. (AP Photo/Lance Murphey, File)
Priscilla Presley's court filing says there are several issues that call into question the authenticity of the living trust amendment.
The filing says they include failure to notify Priscilla Presley of the change as required, a misspelling of Priscilla Presley's name on a document purportedly signed by her daughter, an atypical signature of Lisa Marie Presley, and the lack of a witness or notarization. For this reason, she asked a judge to declare the amendment invalid.
The filing says business manager Barry Siegel intended to resign, which under the trust's previous terms would leave Priscilla Presley, 77, and Riley Keough, 33, as co-trustees.
A message seeking comment from representatives for Riley Keough was not immediately returned.
FILE – Lisa Marie Presley, second from right, her daughter Riley Keough, left, and twin daughters Finley and Harper Lockwood, arrive at the 24th Annual ELLE Women in Hollywood Awards at the Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills on October 16, 2017 in Los Angeles. (Photo Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)
Lisa Marie Presley left behind three surviving children. In addition to Riley Keough, her daughter with first husband Danny Keough, she had 14-year-old twin daughters with her fourth husband, Michael Lockwood.
Presley filed for divorce from Lockwood in 2021, but the two were still arguing over finances in family court when she died.
Priscilla Presley's filing is one of the first of what will likely be many legal maneuvers surrounding the estate of Lisa Marie Presley, Elvis Presley's sole heir.
It is not clear, however, how much that estate is worth. A lawsuit Lisa Marie Presley filed in 2018 alleging that Siegel had mismanaged the trust said it was worth more than $100 million, but most of it had been depleted.
(with information from AP)