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Anthony Bourdain’s Estate

For all that is known about chef Anthony Bourdain’s colourful lifestyle, the estate plan he left behind is surprisingly comprehensive.

It has been reported that Bourdain left behind both a Last Will and Testament and a separate Trust.

Bourdain’s Will leaves the residue of his estate to his minor daughter, Ariane.  The residue has been valued at approximately $1.2 million, and consists of savings, cash, brokerage accounts, personal property, and intangible property including royalties and residuals.  In the event that Bourdain survived his daughter, the residue was to pass to his daughter’s nanny.

Bourdain appointed his estranged wife as estate trustee.  This makes sense given that Ariane is the daughter of the marriage and that the mother will likely have her daughter’s best interests in mind while the estate is administered.  Bourdain was also mindful to include in his Will other assets – personal and household effects, including frequent flyer miles.  Given the amount of travelling Bourdain did, it was shrewd of him to specifically include this in his Will.

A separate trust was also settled, apparently containing most of his wealth.  Again, his estranged wife is named as trustee, with Ariane as beneficiary receiving money from the trust when she turns 25, 30, and 35.  Presumably, Bourdain settled a trust to avoid the payment of taxes and the publicity associated with probate – another sign of a well thought out estate plan.

While so many celebrities succumb to poor estate planning, it is refreshing that in addition to teaching us about cooking, travelling, eating, and so much more, Bourdain also taught us about the importance of a thorough estate plan.

 

Noah Weisberg

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