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Celebrity Legacies: The Battle Over Marilyn Monroe's Iconic Legacy

Marilyn Monroe left a legacy that seems to grow brighter each year.  Monroe's image and likeness were so valuable that a multi-million dollar lawsuit over her publicity rights raged on, more than fifty years after she died, until it was finally resolved by a federal court of appeals.  Marilyn_Monroe_in_Gentlemen_Prefer_Blondes

The second wife of Marilyn Monroe's acting coach was in the center of it.  Why did she -- whom Monroe barely even knew -- have control of the image and legacy of one of Hollywood's most beloved stars ever?

This is installment #10 of our Estate Planning Lessons From The Stars series, which is based on the Celebrity Legacies TV show for which we provide commentary as the estate legal experts. See other articles in the series here.

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Want to spend eternity on top of Marilyn Monroe?

Any lawyer specializing in the probate and estate planning field has heard many stories of people going to great lengths to maximize what they can leave for their children.  This one ranks right up there with the best of them.Marilyn Monroe crypt

Elsie Poncher's late husband is currently buried in a crypt directly on top of Marilyn Monroe.  He's been there for the last 23 years.  Poncher owns the tomb right next to it, and plans to move her husband into it so she can sell the one directly above Monroe.  Why?  So she can -- hopefully -- raise enough money to pay off the mortgage on her Beverly Hills home.  Poncher wants to leave the valuable property free and clear to her children.

But the mortgage is 1.6 million dollars.  So where did Poncher turn to raise so much cash?  To Ebay of course.  You can see the sale listing here.  The bidding opened at $500,000.  Right now, the highest bid is $4.5 million -- and there are still several days to go! 

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