Betty White was one of those rare celebrities that everyone loved. Working in the estate industry, we can’t help but talk about the wills of the rich and famous. You would be surprised to know about the planning considerations that have come up with Betty’s estimated $75 million dollar estate. Golden girl? More like multi-platinum….
One of Betty’s greatest legacies is helping animals through advocacy, volunteering and making generous donations. According to those grocery store tabloids (not that I ever read them….*cough*) Betty left a $5 million trust to her pets and her will stipulated that they have luxury collars, leashes, as well as their own valet and housekeeper.
“I’m the ultimate cougar. Animal lover that I am” – Betty White
In her autobiography, Betty admitted that she was a bit of a hoarder and that she had empathy for whoever had to sort through her belongings upon her passing. I don’t know a Trust Officer that wouldn’t jump at the chance to put in the overtime on that task.
It has also been reported that Betty’s preference was to spend the last few years of her life at her long-time marital home in Carmel, California. Instead, she was forced to live in Los Angeles, because it was more accessible and made at-home care easier. Very surprising to hear for someone with such a large net worth. Having the mental capacity to make health care decisions can easily be an issue when you are in your late nineties. But maybe we should widen the legal test for capacity to include still being sharp and hilarious?
A fun fact is that Betty’s house in Carmel had a special room devoted to stuffed animals and was filled to capacity. It seems very fitting that her final role was as Bitey, a stuffed tiger in Toy Story 4. That just makes you like her more doesn’t it?
Betty White would have turned 100 on January 17th. This year, January 17th is also Blue Monday, which people say is the most depressing day of the year. But that wasn’t Betty’s style at all. I say that January 17th is still a birthday worth celebrating.
2021 was a rough year for a lot of people. 2022 hasn’t gotten off to a great start, but soon enough we’ll all be back together in person, catching up and joking around.
Happy New Year everyone!
Since writing this blog post, #BettyWhiteChallenge has taken over social media. Join in and donate to your local animal shelter!