Atlanta Black Star: News About Whitney Houston’s Estate Settling Debt Begs Question About How Other
Whitney Houston’s estate has been battling the IRS since 2012. (Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
The estate of Whitney Houston has reached a $2 million settlement over her tax debt, according to a Thursday, Jan. 4 report from The Blast. Initially, the estate was required to pay $11 million but documents obtained by the website reveal a lower amount was agreed upon Tuesday, Dec. 26.
After Houston died in 2012, the IRS estimated her estate undervalued her worth — including song royalties, TV and movie residuals and the publicity rights — by $22.6 million. Because of that, the estate originally owed nearly six times as much money than they currently agreed upon.
The singer’s estate argued that the IRS had overvalued Houston’s assets and asserted their tax returns were right.
While it seems like a sigh of relief that the estate has settled such debt, attorney Bernie Lawrence-Watkins of B. Lawrence Watkins & Associates in Atlanta, says years of trouble can be avoided with a will, which she says is “the only legal document (outside of a written agreement executed by the decedent [deceased person] prior to the time of death) that identifies the wishes of the decedent.”