Pop superstar Prince passed away six years ago, but his estate has only just recently been settled. The delay is due to the fact that no one could really agree on how exactly to split up all of the musician’s assets. It’s now been revealed that Prince was worth a whopping $156.4 million. How does that compare to his fellow superstar Michael Jackson, whose estate also took years to settle?
Disagreements Over How Much Prince’s Estate Was Actually Worth
Prince died in 2016 after a fentanyl overdose — leaving no will. His estate’s administrator, Comerica Bank & Trust, and the IRS have been duking it out over the estate’s value for the last six years. Comerica put the value at $82.3 million, while the IRS claimed it was $163.2 million. In 2020, Comerica actually sued the IRS in U.S. tax court, saying that the agency’s calculations were full of errors.
A trial, set to go forward in March of this year, was canceled because of the settlement. In recent court documents, Comercia said that while the IRS settlement was “fair and reasonable,” it believes it would have “prevailed” in the tax court case. According to the Star Tribune, “Comerica said it told Prince’s heirs that if lowering estate taxes was their ‘primary interest’ they should continue pressing the IRS and — if need be — go to trial.”
Who Gets The Money?
However, now that the two parties have come to an agreement on just how much Prince was worth, that money can start being distributed to his heirs. Those heirs include the artist’s siblings, though two of whom died in the six years it took to reach the settlement.
The estate will be almost evenly divided between New York music company Primary Wave and the three oldest of Prince’s six siblings or their families. Primary Wave bought out the interests of Prince’s three younger siblings; the remaining three refused the company’s offer.
How Does Prince’s Estate Compare To Michael Jackson’s?
As complicated as all this is, it could have been a lot worse. Legendary musician Michael Jackson passed away in 2009. Seven years later an administrator put its value at a mere $7 million. The IRS saw things very differently, putting the value at $1.1 billion. The two parties eventually agreed on calling it $482 million. The whole thing wasn’t settled until spring 2021 when a U.S. Tax Court judge ruled that the estate was actually worth $111 million.