The Jackson family is no stranger to drama, and now the guardianship of minors can be added to the list of legal topics they’ve faced. A Los Angeles court has temporarily granted legal guardianship rights for Michael Jackson’s children to TJ Jackson, the son of Tito Jackson and one of Michael’s nephews.
TJ petitioned for and became the guardian of Prince, Paris and Blanket Jackson today following a prolonged absence by Katherine Jackson, the childrens’ grandmother and legal guardian since the death of the King of Pop in 2009. Katherine’s whereabouts and health situation recently evolved into a long and tangled story covered by many media outlets, but in essence Katherine left her charges in Los Angeles when she went to see her sons perform in concert and somehow ended up in Arizona. (Check out TMZ’s news page on Katherine for more information one what’s been happening this past week.) A huge controversy has been brewing regarding her welfare, but she is supposedly returning home to L.A. soon to be with her grandchildren. Her lawyer has said that he will seek to have her reinstated as the children’s guardian when she returns.
While all of this sounds like an incredibly complex nightmare the average individual would never have to go through, an estate planning attorney can tell you this is not necessarily the case. Estates involving extensive assets, complex wills and trusts, minor children, and feuding relatives often require extra TLC from legal professionals, and what else can we truthfully expect from Michael Jackson’s estate?
The silver lining
TJ’s appointment as guardian is perceived by many as a good move. TJ is known to be close to Michael’s children and has acted as a father figure for them in the past. It is said that Prince, Paris and Blanket supported his move to become their temporary guardian, and the lawyers for the Michael Jackson Estate appeared in court today to support his petition. According to TMZ, Judge Mitch Beckloff has even advised TJ and his lawyer to consider seeking permanent guardianship of Michael’s children given Katherine Jackson’s present situation.
Stay tuned for more information regarding the legal guardianship of Michael Jackson’s children as the story develops in the coming days and weeks.