franklin, childhood home, Memphis, Tennessee

The Verdict Is In: A Jury Upholds Aretha Franklin’s Handwritten Will Found In Her Couch

A jury decided in a dispute that pitted one of Aretha Franklin’s sons against two others regarding two handwritten wills that were found following her death.

According to The Associated Press, a jury found that the last handwritten will penned by the Queen of Soul will be the one that will be upheld. That particular will, written in 2014 and found inside a notebook under cushions at her home, is the document the family will abide by. Another will that was dated 2010 was discovered in a cabinet. That one was notarized and sealed.

“I’m very, very happy. I just wanted my mother’s wishes to be adhered to,” Kecalf Franklin said. “We just want to exhale right now. It’s been a long five years for my family, my children.”

It took the jury less than an hour to come to its decision.

The attorneys for Kecalf and Edward Franklin argued that since Franklin wrote the will in 2014, even though it wasn’t notarized, it was valid as it was the most current one.

“You can take your will and leave it on the kitchen counter. It’s still your will,” attorney Charles McKelvie told the jury.

Franklin’s other son, Ted White II, who would have been the will’s executor, wanted the 2010 will to stand. White’s attorney, Kurt Olson, told the jury that the earlier will had more validity because it was notarized and locked in a cabinet. He also stated that the other will would not have been left in a couch if the other will was that important.

“We were here to see what the jury would rule. We’ll live with it,” Olson said after the verdict.

Franklin had four sons. Clarence Franklin, who was not involved in the dispute, lives under guardianship in an assisted living center.