2 Jul 2009

Jackson will leaves estate to family

4:30 pm on 2 July 2009

Michael Jackson's will has been filed in a Los Angeles court, giving his entire estate to a family trust.

The 50-year-old singer died last Thursday following a suspected cardiac arrest. Results of a second post mortem will not be available for a few weeks.

The BBC reports the document, dated 7 July 2002, reveals he "intentionally omitted" to provide for his former wife Debbie Rowe.

Jackson's mother, Katherine, is named as a beneficiary of the trust and the guardian of the singer's three young children, who are named in the will.

It estimated Jackson's estate at that time to be more than $US500 million.

The Michael Jackson Family Trust would benefit his three children, his mother and unnamed charities, according to Reuters.

The news agency also reported that Jackson's five-page will said: "I have intentionally omitted to provide for my former wife, Deborah Rowe Jackson."

Ms Rowe married Jackson in 1996 but filed for divorce in 1999. She gave up custody rights to the children but sought them again in 2003. They agreed a settlement in 2006 but the terms were never disclosed.

Ms Rowe is the biological mother of Jackson's eldest children - Michael Joseph Jackson Jr, known as Prince Michael, 12, and Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, 11.

The singer's youngest son - seven-year-old Prince Michael II - was born to a surrogate mother whose identity has never been revealed.

Long-time friend and singer Diana Ross is also named as guardian for Jackson's children in the event that his mother was unable to fulfil her duties.

Katherine Jackson was granted temporary guardianship of Jackson's three children on Monday.

Funeral plans

Fans and reporters continue to gather outside Jackson's Neverland ranch northwest of Los Angeles after reports that his body will go on public view there.

Various sources claim a public viewing has been scheduled for Friday ahead of a private funeral on Sunday.

Family members have met police and the California Highway Patrol to discuss funeral arrangements.

Unconfirmed reports suggest Jackson's body may be placed in a glass coffin and be transported from Los Angeles to Neverland in a "fairytale carriage".

A California Highway Patrol spokesperson says details of the funeral have not been agreed upon yet.