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Estate heirs in Nevada can litigate when ownership is an issue

Readers in Nevada may be familiar with the works of famed artist, Alexander Calder. Calder worked as an abstract artist for decades and produced famed works such as 'Standing Constellation," among others. Now, the heirs of his estate and the heirs and beneficiaries of a gallery in another state have become embroiled in a lawsuit.

The lawsuit between the heirs disputes the ownership of a few of the works by the famed artist. In addition, the heirs of the Calder estate said that they have been damaged in the amount of $20 million. The heirs of the owner of the gallery that holds the artwork denied that the artist's family owned the works.

Recently, a court from another state held that the lawsuit, as written, was without merit. However, the heirs of Calder indicated that they would consider an appeal tot hat decision. It is not uncommon for heirs and beneficiaries in Nevada to seek ownership of assets that may have been weft in the possession of another at the time of the person that created or purchased an items death.

Some of the issues facing the Calder family and that of the former owner of the gallery may have been avoid had the estate planning documents that were made by the artist been clear as to the ownership of the works. In many cases, people in our state and elsewhere leave detailed lists that specifically bequeath items to an individual or organization. This is just one of the many benefits of full estate planning and one that should be considered as people in Nevada begin the process.

Source: Los Angeles Times, Alexander Calder heirs see their lawsuit against dealer dismissed, David Ng, Jan. 3, 2014

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