5 Black Celebrities Who Died Without Leaving a Will

bob marley

Bob Marley

When Bob Marley died in 1981, he was said to be worth about $30 million.  The reggae megastar never made a will, even though he knew he had terminal cancer for at least a year before his death.

According to Forbes,  after Marley’s death, a pair of close advisers — his attorney and his accountant — decided to help craft an estate plan. Instead of allowing the assets to be settled under Jamaican law, the duo convinced Marley’s widow, Rita, to forge his name to a series of documents, and predate them to before he died. This was done to transfer to Rita Marley the control of the majority of  her husband’s corporate holdings, along with much of his royalty rights and money, Forbes reported.

Rita Marley eventually confessed to the scheme and said she merely acted on the attorney’s advice. She was removed from control of the estate as one of the administrators, and Marley’s children received the rights to profit from the estate.

Back to top