The Telegraph reported Hollywood star Tony Curtis decided not to include five of his children in his will, including his daughter actress Jamie Lee Curtis. While he apparently acknowledged their existence, Curtis told CBS television show "Inside Edition" that he had "intentionally and with full knowledge chosen not to provide for them."
Curtis, a New York native, was 85-years-old when he died from cardiac arrest this past September in his Nevada home. He was married five times and had children with three of his wives - Christine Kaufmann, Leslie Allen, and actress Janet Leigh. Jill Vandenberg Curtis, his fifth wife, was designated as the representative of his estate in his will, which was filed in the state of Nevada.
“Tony’s last will and testament and his passing wishes are private family matters,” said Jill, whom Curtis married in 1998. One of his children, not Jamie Lee, had attempted to contest Tony Curtis’ will but was unsuccessful.
Wills can generally be modified and updated to reflect a person’s wishes and the new circumstances he or she are in. According to FindLaw, decedents can change their mind about their heirs and how they want to distribute their assets. While surviving spouses are legally protected when it comes to inheriting the property of the deceased, children do not have the same rights unless the child was unintentionally omitted from a will.
To learn more about your legal options when creating or modifying a will, talk to an estate planning lawyer who can explain how you can change a will and the rights you and your heirs may have when passing down assets and property. For more general information on estate planning, visit the Related Resource links below.