According to new court documents, Aretha Franklin left almost $1 million in uncashed checks. They were located when an inventory was being conducted on her possessions. It’s unclear if the singer was storing them away for some reason or if she simply forgot.
One check from Sound Exchange and Screen Writers Guild was for $702,711.90. Another one from EMI, BMI, Feel Good Films and Carlin Music, made out to her publishing company Springtime Publishing, was for $285,944.27 — both equaling $988,656.17.
Billboard reports that lawyers for Franklin’s son, Kecalf Franklin, found one of the banks that cut the checks. And court documents state there were cases where checks had been uncashed in 2012, then had to be made out again in 2016.
All of this comes after three handwritten wills were located in the singer’s Detroit area home, which was reported in May. Two were found in a locked cabinet, after Sabrina Owens, her niece and head of the estate, located the key.
The third will was found under couch cushions in Franklin’s living room. The documents are now being looked at by a handwriting expert to determine its validity.
Franklin passed away in August of 2018 from pancreatic cancer, and there’s been a battle over who would oversee her estate ever since. Kecalf Franklin alleges that Owens didn’t turn in an inventory of his mother’s estate to her four children and heirs until six months past the legal due date.
And earlier this month, it was revealed that Kecalf Franklin issued a subpoena to the firm Thav Gross PV that handled his mother’s legalities for decades. Not only does he want Owens removed from handling the estate, he wants all financial records, bank statements, wire transfers and trust information to be handed in from 2012 on.
Kecalf also claimed Owens didn’t alert his mother’s heirs to business deals like the Nat Geo docuseries on her life entitled “Genius.”