*Two of the heirs in line to get a chunk of Prince’s multimillion-dollar fortune have accused the estate’s special entertainment advisers of mismanaging the October tribute concert and keeping profits the estate was guaranteed to receive.
According to Billboard, Prince’s sister Tyka Nelson and his half-brother Omarr Baker are seeking at least $7 million and pointing the finger at veteran entertainment attorneys L. Londell McMillan and Charles Koppelman, who were both hired by the estate to help monetize Prince’s entertainment assets and have entered a number of licensing agreements on behalf of the estate.
As previously reported, Nelson and Baker last week opposed McMillan being appointed a special adviser to the estate, favoring former Prince associate and CNN commentator Van Jones for the role. The judge ultimately ruled that a special adviser was not necessary.
In their documents filed with the Carver County District Court, where Prince’s probate case is being heard, Nelson and Baker also argued that Bremer Trust, the temporary special administrator of the estate that hired McMillan and Koppelman, should be liable for the attorneys’ actions and should not be discharged until the heirs received a proper accounting of the profits from the concert.
Bremer, which was appointed by the court to temporarily administer Prince’s estate shortly after his death on April 21, is currently scheduled to turn over its management duties to a permanent representative, Comerica Bank and Trust N.A., at the end of January.
“The allegations are wildly and unethically false as well as damaging to the Estate and Heirs who gained financially,” said McMillan in a statement to Billboard. “Our focus remains to protect and maximize the value of the Prince estate and legacy. I understand the appropriate responses to these absurd comments will be forthcoming by Bremer.”
Originally planned for the new U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, the tribute concert was later moved to the smaller Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. Along the way, some performers were announced before they were confirmed, and other performers dropped out along the way.
According to Nelson and Baker, Bremer, on the advice of McMillan and Koppelman, hired Jobu Presents, a company formed solely to promote this concert, instead of more experienced promoters. Jobu backed out, but still paid McMillan a commission, which Bremer never tried to recoup, the heirs allege.
“Mr. McMillan profited greatly from the sold-out tribute concert and the after-party from the use and exploitation of estate assets,” the document states, adding that Bremer failed to seek compensation from McMillan.
McMillan represented Prince for 13 years and freed him of his Warner Bros. contract in the ’90s.
Nelson and Baker claim that in addition to the concert proceeds, Bremer’s final accounting does not list the full value of other estate assets, including revenue streams from Prince’s recordings. The overall value of the estate is currently estimated to be as much as $300 million.