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Music Producer Wants $1 Million from Deceased Florida Rapper’s Estate

Apr 30, 2019 - Probate by

It’s been nearly a year since rapper XXXTentacion was tragically killed during a robbery in Deerfield Beach. In the time since his death at the age of 20, the Florida-born rapper has had another album go platinum and a single hit the top of the Billboard 100. Meanwhile, XXXTentacion’s estate is fighting off a claim from a music producer who says he’s owed $1 million.

Jimmy Duval filed a claim in the probate court handling XXXTentacion’s estate, arguing that he’s owed the money for royalties from his work on the rapper’s breakout single “Look at Me.” Duval says he created the beat for the track, which helped XXXTentacion earn his first record deal and later went platinum.

Duval told XXL that he was wrongly left off of the credits for the song and therefore denied a piece of the royalties.

“It goes without saying that everyone deserves credit for their contributing works,” Duval told the magazine “My friend is no longer with us and [I’m] only asking to remain a part of the legacy that we created together with ‘Look at Me.’”

XXXTentacion—born Jahseh Dwayne Ricardo Onfroy—was killed in June 2018 during a robbery at a motorcycle shop in Deerfield Beach. The rapper was reportedly carrying $50,000 in a Louis Vuitton bag at the time. Four men have been charged with first-degree murder and robbery.

The rapper reportedly created a will before he died, naming his mother—Cleopatra Bernard— as the executor of his estate. Bernard recently sued XXXTentacion’s half-sister for defamation, alleging that she suggested publicly that Bernard orchestrated XXXTentacion’s murder. Bernard is also trying to get back the car in which XXXTentacion was shot and killed.

The Importance of Estate Planning

XXXTentacion’s tragic death is yet another reminder that life is often too short. The legal dispute over his estate is an example of the complicated questions that can come up after a person passes away. South Floridians who want to plan how their estates will be settled can go a long way by consulting a Miami probate lawyer.

When most people die in Florida, their assets are distributed through a legal process called probate administration. Probate is the legal system’s way of settling the estate according to the deceased person’s wishes. That’s made much easier by having a will.

If you die without a will, your assets will be distributed to your heirs in a line of priority set by Florida law. Surviving spouses are first in line, followed by descendants like children, grandchildren and parents. By making a will, however, you can decide who should get which assets.

In many cases, a person planning his or her estate may want to avoid probate altogether by opting for a living trust.

Speak with a Miami Probate Lawyer Today

If you or a loved one is considering challenging a will or planning your estate, it’s vital to seek to counsel of a seasoned estate planning attorney.

Hoffman & Hoffman is a South Florida estate planning law firm whose Miami estate planning lawyers help people manage their assets in life and decide how property will be distributed in the event of their death. We are pleased to represent clients throughout South Florida, including in Ft. Lauderdale, West Palm Beach and Coconut Grove. Contact us at (305) 372-2877 to speak with an attorney.