Obviously this would happen

A bitter public feud has erupted among the family of the late French rock star Johnny Hallyday after two of his children challenged his will, which leaves his entire reported €100 million (£89m) estate to his fourth wife.

Hundreds of thousands had gathered to mourn the death of the crooner they called “the French Elvis” at his funeral last month in which President Emmanuel Macron delivered a eulogy that moved many to tears across the country.

But weeks after the huge show of national unity, “Johnny” came back to haunt France after his 34-year old daughter, the actress Laura Smet, announced she was challenging the will because it failed to leave her anything.

Nothing causes family rows quite like inheritance, eh?

23 comments on “Obviously this would happen

  1. I am not sure that is entirely fair. I think inheritance provides the occasion not necessarily the cause.

    If you read what she says, it looks a lot like the younger Ms Hallyday feels betrayed. Her father picked a side – rather strongly too. She is talking about being rejected, not being poor.

    Which is reasonable. It is part of the move away from the post-Romance Christian tradition in which people get married because they feel love for each other – and hence their children – which is eternal and kind of God-like. We have not yet openly acknowledged that the sex we get today and hope to get tomorrow is vastly more important than the promises and the sex we got a decade ago. But we are getting there. Just as marriage is unstable, highly conditional and temporary, so are our relationships with our children.

    I suspect that if his will had said that he loved all his children and they were the best thing that he ever produced, but that they were financially secure so he didn’t feel the need to leave them anything, Ms Smet would not be so upset.

  2. What SMFS said. This will is a symptom, not a cause.

    Just sad that the “sins of the fathers” transmit down the generations. Maybe he was a good father to the last two adopted ones, or maybe it’s Letitia who’s a good mother (and put up with him long enough to win the jackpot for her kids).

  3. £89 million? Surely that’s enough for it to be shared out and everyone made richer than 99% of the rest of France?

  4. “French law does not allow disinheritence of children”.

    True, but as I understand it the will was made in the USA, presumably as he was domiciled there.

  5. A lot of people have not read the article. Hallyday was a long time resident of California. Taxes are a wonderful thing aren’t they? So the will comes under Californian law. Which does allow the dispossession of the children. Otherwise I think the French rule mentioned in the article is that the children get 75% of the money.

    It also said that two recent cases have seen French Courts allow long-term French musicians resident in America have their wills come under American law. Which is nice of them.

  6. A couple of points – it depends on where the assets and property are. Any French property will come under French law. The other one that the courts will have to determine is the durability of his links to France.

    The only winners here will be the lawyers.

  7. “in which President Emmanuel Macron delivered a eulogy that moved many to tears across the country.”

    Every time Granny’s Boy speaks anyone with the slightest attachment to reason and human decency has to struggle against tears.

    This time praise for another Frogster who so loved his native land that he lived in California. At least it wasn’t Russia this time . Tho’ the resemble of Californian politics to the old soviet union grows by the day.

  8. SMFS… Very interesting. I would otherwise have assumed she was just another low life out to grab as much of her Daddy’s wealth as possible.

  9. Ms Smet, who tried to commit suicide when her father nearly died in 2010, said he visited her dreams every night. “You are handsome, with no tattoos, you are finally free…”

    Mon Dieu.

  10. Bloke in Taiwan – “I would otherwise have assumed she was just another low life out to grab as much of her Daddy’s wealth as possible.”

    She might well be. Who knows? She does not sound like it.

    But then she wouldn’t, would she?

  11. Nothing causes rows like caring for elderly relatives, you think you know family members well after 30 odd years.

    Inheritance….that wont be a problem, its here and now and a totally selfish sister in law and her obssesive cleaning freak of a husband that causes rows.

  12. Nothing causes rows like caring for elderly relatives, you think you know family members well after 30 odd years.

    I’ve seen middle aged siblings torn apart by some of them becoming passionately convinced that the others should provide 24/7 hospice care in their home to a dying parent.

  13. “Nothing causes family rows quite like inheritance, eh?”

    I doubt it. The point is that inheritance rows often end in court and are therefore well publicised.

    From my father I inherited a rifle and ammunition, a baggy sweater, and some woollen stockings suitable for the golf course (him) or the mountainside (me). I already had his cricket “box”. My siblings chose similar bric-a-brac and mementoes, and my mother got everything else. We all seemed entirely happy. Happy with our inheritances, that is, not with the old boy’s death.

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