Priscilla Presley and granddaughter Riley Keough are reportedly not speaking amid a “very tense and heartbreaking” battle over Lisa Marie’s estate. Legal experts say the court is likely to back Priscilla’s claim.
Priscilla and Lisa Marie’s daughters in a tense battle over the state and will
Tensions are riding high as a family battle has erupted over who will inherit Lisa Marie Presley’s estate, as her mother, Priscilla, has filed a lawsuit contesting the validity of her late daughter’s will.
Only four days after the memorial service was held for Lisa Marie at Graceland, Priscilla filed a petition in a Los Angeles court challenging an amendment made in 2016 to her daughter’s will, CNN reported.
Reportedly, Priscilla and granddaughter Riley Keough are no longer on speaking terms due to her grandmother’s decision to contest Lisa Marie’s well, an insider close to the family told Entertainment Tonight.
“Riley has been mourning the loss of her mother and is heartbroken to have to deal with a trust dispute with a family member,” the source said. “Priscilla is adamant that she has a valid case and that she will prevail in court. Riley and Priscilla aren’t communicating at this time, but have been in communication through lawyers.”
Adding to the tension, People reports that friends said Riley resented that Priscilla sided with Michael Lockwood, the father of her half-siblings Finley and Harper, in a custody battle.
“Riley was always on her mom’s side when it came to Michael,” says a source close to her. “It bothered her that her grandmother and Michael flew to the funeral together.”
A close friend of Lisa Marie’s told People: “Michael was not invited.”
“He came to Memphis under the pretense that he had to chaperone the twins — and he forced his way in with Priscilla’s help,” the friend added. “The last thing Lisa Marie would have wanted was for Michael to be there.”
Legal experts say Priscilla has strong case in dispute over Lisa Marie’s estate
Priscilla Presley is challenging her daughter’s will, and legal experts believe that the court is likely to back her claim, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Presley filed a challenge in a Los Angeles court asking a judge to invalidate a recently discovered document from 2016 – one removing her and Barry Siegel (Lisa Marie’s former manager) as co-trustees of Lisa Marie Presley’s trust – and replacing them with Lisa Marie’s two children: daughter Riley and son Benjamin Keough, who died by suicide at age 27 in 2020.
As co-trustees, Priscilla and Siegel were given control of the trust, the Graceland mansion, and a 15 percent stake in Elvis Presley Enterprises. Altogether, these entities brought in a reported $110 million in 2022.
Priscilla’s arguments are reported to be that the alleged amendment was never delivered to her while Lisa Marie was alive, as required by the original trust. Additionally, Priscilla noted in her petition that the date of the document misspelled her name, and her signature looked inconsistent with her usual signing. Further, it was neither witnessed nor notarized.
Reportedly, the original trust document sets out a process for how it can be amended, and California law establishes that orders laid out in such a document should be followed.
According to one attorney, California case law upholds that when a legal instrument provides a particular method of revocation, amendment, or alteration – if that is not followed – it is not a valid instrument.
A number of attorneys who were asked for their opinion by the Los Angeles Times all concurred that Priscilla Presley had to be a strong case.