Feud Over Hendrix Estate Might Be Resolved 45 Years after His Death

Jimi HendrixThe latest in a long string of battles between Jimi Hendrix's siblings may have been settled, but with proper estate planning, it might not have happened at all.

When Jimi Hendrix passed away unexpectedly in 1970, he left behind perhaps the greatest rock guitarist legacy of all time. His fame, barely diminished in the four decades, has allowed his estate to continue to profit but his lack of an estate plan has have left his brother, Leon Hendrix, and his adopted sister, Janie Hendrix, fighting with each other over that legacy for the past 45 years. Both of them, seeking various ways to profit, have always worked at cross-purposes. The latest battle between them was over a trademark infringement lawsuit.

This matter has been settled, as reported recently by the Seattle Times in "Latest Jimi Hendrix family feud resolved in settlement." That the siblings have been able to fight as long as they have could be the result of two distinct estate planning mistakes.

The first was that Jimi Hendrix passed away without having created a will or having done any other form of estate planning. By law his estate, including the rights to his music and image, went to his father James Hendrix. It is unknown if Jimi would have wanted his father to control everything, or even anything at all.

Second, James Hendrix may have compounded the problem in his will, which left the entire $80M estate to Janie, excluding son Leon. While that will has been upheld in court and Janie legally controls Jimi Hendrix's legacy, that has not stopped Leon from attempting to profit as well. That is what led to the latest feud between Janie and Leon. (Looks like Janie wins again but at what cost emotionally and financially?)

We may never know whether the feuding could have been avoided had either Jimi Hendrix had a will or James Hendrix had a will that more equitably divided the estate. It certainly would not have hurt the situation.

You may not be a rock star, but just the same, contact an estate planning attorney to help you avoid any family drama after you die. You can learn more about this topic as well as other strategies on our website under the tab entitled: estate planning in Virginia. Be sure you also sign up for our complimentary e-newsletter so that you may be informed of all the latest issues that could affect you, your loved ones and your estate planning.  However, proper estate planning is not a do-it-yourself project.  Why not call us for a complimentary consultation at 757-259-0707.  

Reference: Seattle Times (August 13, 2015) "Latest Jimi Hendrix family feud resolved in settlement."

Like this article?

Share on facebook
Share on Facebook
Share on twitter
Share on Twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on Linkdin
Share on pinterest
Share on Pinterest

Leave a comment


We have a LOT more where that came from!

We hate spam too. We will never share or sell your information.

Call Now ButtonCall Us Now https://jsfiddle.net/7h5246b8/

Request a free consultation

We hate spam too. We will never share or sell your information.

We've been putting together as many resources as possible so that we can continue to help:

  • If you’re a current client with a signing appointment or a prospective client with a consultation and would prefer that meeting take place in your own home, we can accomplish that with a little bit of pre-planning on our part and with the addition of a laptop, smartphone, tablet or other computer in your home to facilitate this virtual meeting. For those of you that need to sign legal documents, that too can be accomplished with the use of a webcam (FaceTime etc.), so that we can witness and electronically notarize all of your important legal documents.
  • We launched the rollout of our on-demand webinar early so that new clients and our allied professionals can view the important component parts of ‘an estate plan that works’ at their convenience.  That is available on our website.
  • Live video workshops will be produced as quickly as possible and certainly ahead of our previous schedule; we will keep you posted as these events become available. Given the ‘boutique’ nature of the firm, we rarely have more than ten people in our office including team members at any one time. During this period of ‘social distancing,’ we promise to have no more than 8 people at any time.   This allows us to comply with the Governor’s directive to limit in-person gatherings.
  • The best way to communicate with us is still by phone during regular office hours of 8:30 to 5:00, Monday through Friday, or, you can email any of our team members (that is, their first name followed by @zarembalaw.com).  We will respond to these emails as quickly as possible.
  • Please continue to follow the directives of our local, state, and federal agencies. For your health and in consideration of our team who is assisting you, if you’ve scheduled an office appointment or planned to drop off paperwork and are experiencing a fever, dry cough, or shortness of breath, please contact your primary care doctor for guidance and then our office to reschedule.

Thank you, Walt and the Zaremba Team

Update to our Process

The unprecedented coronavirus pandemic has taken our entire country by surprise. We understand how difficult this time is for America’s businesses and families.  However, we believe it is vitally important that we make every effort possible to continue to offer solutions that avoid disrupting our important partnership with you, your family and friends.  As you know, estate planning is not something that should wait for a more convenient time, therefore the opportunity to address your important goals both during and after this crisis should not wait.  To that end, we have added the option of a ‘virtual consultation’ to our office process.  You will now have a choice of either meeting with us in our office or in the comfort of your own home.