Michael Jackson's Mother Katherine Jackson Battles With Pop Star's Estate Over Secret Deal
Michael Jackson's mom, Katherine Jackson, fought and lost her attempt to block a proposed secret deal from her late son's estate.
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According to court documents obtained by RadarOnline.com, a Los Angeles Superior Court judge ruled that the estate, run by executors John Branca and John McClain, can move forward with the transaction.
"The proposed transaction is approved and the executors are authorized and instructed to take all actions necessary to implement the proposed transaction, including but not limited to signing all contracts and performing all obligations required of the estate," the order stated.
Branca and McClain initially filed a motion in November 2022 seeking approval from the court to sign off on a deal. Many believe the "secret business transaction" is related to a reported $800 million sale of half of Jackson's music catalog.
In the motion, Branca and McClain explained they "have an opportunity which they believe is to the substantial advantage of the Estate and in the best interest of the beneficiaries."
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In March 2023, reports surfaced that Katherine Jackson had filed a motion in opposition to the deal. The 92-year-old requested the court seal the records due to the documents containing "sensitive information regarding Ms. Jackson's family and private life."
Branca and McClain have headed Jackson's estate since his passing in 2009. The two Johns believe "they have the power and authority to enter into the Proposed Transaction pursuant to the Order Authorizing Operation of the MJJ Business as the Proposed Transaction is within and in furtherance of the operation of the MJJ Business, as well under Michael Jackson's will."
Katherine Jackson Previously Took Battles With Michael Jackson's Estate To Court
Branca and McClain also accused Katherine of objecting to the 2009 documentary This Is It. A court ultimately approved the film, which became the highest-grossing concert documentary and earned the estate millions.
"The Estate was teetering on the verge of collapse, with more than $400 million in debt that encumbered Michael's most significant assets and little or no liquidity or means to service that debt," reads a motion filed by Branca and McClain at the time. "Through creative thinking, hard work and business savvy-and, of course, Michael's extraordinary creative legacy-the Executors transformed the MJJ Business into a profitable enterprise."
Source: Harrison Funk/MJ Memorial / Getty
In March, the court agreed to allow Jackson's children and siblings, brother Randy and sister Rebbie, to view confidential documents related to the proposed deal.
The beneficiaries of Michael's estate are his three children, Prince, Paris, and Blanket. In his will, Michael added a provision that also provided support to his mother for the remainder of her life.
This isn't the first time Mrs. Jackson has had to appear in court for family matters and sealed court documents. Back in 2013, Katherine pleaded with a judge to disregard the identity of his children's biological parents during the $40 billion wrongful death suit she's filed against concert promoter AEG Live.
At the time, the judge agreed to keep the paternity of Prince, Paris, and Blanket out of court. A source close to the family stated, "The last thing Katherine wants is for family secrets to be blurted out in court."
Mrs. Jackson obviously still feels this way about her family. At this time it's still unclear whether a judge's ruling will agree with her on the matter.