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Mickey Rooney Estate Fight Ends With Burial Agreement

By Jenny Tsay, Esq. on April 11, 2014 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

The late actor Mickey Rooney can finally rest in peace, now that an agreement has been reached between his estate and his ex-wife regarding his burial plan.

Rooney, who died Sunday at age 93, expressed interest in being buried somewhere with a connection to Hollywood film stars, while his estranged ex-wife Jan Rooney believed that the actor should be buried at a family plot near Hollywood, according to the New York Daily News.

The now-diffused legal battle may leave fans wondering if burial plans should be included as part of a will.

Mickey Rooney's Will

While it appears that Rooney's most recent will didn't specify his burial wishes, it did omit all eight of his surviving children. The only beneficiary listed in the will is a stepson, Mark Aber, who served as Rooney's caregiver before the actor passed away, reports the Daily News.

Prior to his death, Rooney had sought a voluntary conservatorship to get away from an allegedly abusive stepson, Chris Aber. So perhaps that's one of the reasons why Rooney decided to draft a new will leaving his entire estate to Mark.

Omitting relatives you don't want from your will is always an option. But to do so, the willmaker is advised to make his intentions clear and to revoke all prior wills. Most adult children won't have grounds to contest a will if they're explicitly excluded.

What About Burial Plans?

Although burial plans can be included in a will, it's strongly recommended that they're not. This is because your body isn't considered "property," so it can't be part of your estate. So any burial preferences expressed in a will may not be carried out.

The best method is to be like Rooney and let your estate planning lawyer, executor, beneficiaries, or close friends and family members know about your burial plans. This way, they can make the best decision for you. For Rooney, he told Mark and his conservator that he wanted to be buried somewhere with a connection to either Hollywood film stars or military veterans, Rooney's lawyer told the Daily News. According to the burial agreement, Rooney will be buried at Hollywood Forever Cemetery.

The new burial agreement also states that Jan, Chris Aber, and Aber's wife won't be allowed to attend any memorial or burial events.

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