15 Celebrities Who Wrote Their Children Out Of Their Wills

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15 Celebrities Who Wrote Their Children Out Of Their Wills

THR / Sky

Not everybody is close with their family, but you would imagine that if you were rich you could find it in your heart to leave them something nice anyways.

That's not the case with these 15 stars, who each have their own reasons for ignoring their kids in their will.

1. David Cassidy  

Fans of The Patridge Family were shocked to hear about this teen idol's death last month, but the star's will held even more surprises. While he was reportedly on good terms with all three of his kids, Cassidy's daughter and Arrow actress Katie was left out of the inheritance.

David and Katie Cassidy.Variety

Cassidy told People in 2009 that "Because I didn't raise her, I didn't have to parent her," and he really meant it. Katie was raised by her mother, model Sherry Williams, and her step-father, Richard Benedon.

2. Gene Simmons

The Kiss front man has made a fortune selling records and licensing Kiss merchandise, but he's made it very clear that his two children, Nick and Sophie, shouldn't expect to get it when he dies.

Simmons with his children.Ultimate Classic Rock

"In terms of an inheritance and stuff, they're gonna be taken care of, but they will never be rich off my money," the rocker told CNBC. "Because every year they should be forced to get up out of bed, and go out and work and make their own way."

3. Mickey Rooney

When this comedy legend died in 2014, it took two weeks for his family to arrange his funeral because of all their fighting. It seems that seven of Rooney's eight children were left out of his will, along with his estranged wife Jane.


The only person who saw a dime from Rooney's estate was his step-son and caretaker, Aber. But the movie star reportedly had just $18,000 to his name when he passed away.

4. Jackie Chan

The action movie star has a net worth of at least $130 million, but he's been up front about why his son Jaycee shouldn't expect to inherit his cash. Jaycee has publicly struggled with drug abuse, and even spent time in jail for marijuana possession.

Jackie and Jaycee Chan.India Today

"If he is capable, he can make his own money," the actor told NewsAsia in 2011. "If he is not, then he will just be wasting my money."

5. George Lucas

Movie fans will recognize Lucas as the man behind the massively popular Star Wars franchise, and he sold the series to Disney in 2012 for a whopping $4.5 billion.  

Lucas with three of his children.NYDN

But despite the huge payday, Lucas has committed to giving all his money away to charity. Specifically charities that support education for underprivileged kids. That's good news for the world, but not so good for Lucas's four children.

6. Ted Turner

The multi-billionaire is as famous for being the owner of cable networks like CNN and TBS as he is for being an environmentalist. Turner donated $1 billion to  the U.N. in 1997 to start the U.N. Foundation.

Turner, with his daughter Laura and her husband.Zimbio

Between that charity and his family's Turner Foundation, the TV mogul guesses that "at the time of my death, virtually all my wealth will have gone to charity."

But that doesn't rule out a small nest egg for his five kids, either.

7.  Warren Buffett

The man behind the Berkshire Hathaway conglomerate has a hand in dozens of businesses ranging from investment firms to brands like Fruit of the Loom and GEICO. Those have earned him an astounding $78 billion, but the charitable Buffett has pledged to give away 99% of his wealth.

Buffett (center) and his son, Peter.AP

"Fear motivated me, and it will motivate them," he says about letting his kids fend for themselves. "I'm not an enthusiast for dynastic wealth, particularly when 6 billion others have much poorer hands than we do in life."

8. Jerry Lewis

The legendary comedian was known for his on-screen warmth and humor, but in real life he wasn't so friendly. In case you need proof, Lewis recorded this hilariously stand-offish interview just months before his death.

Lewis got the last laugh on his own family too, leaving his entire vast fortune to his widow SanDee Pitnick. That meant the six kids from Lewis's first marriage to his wife Patti Palmer got absolutely nothing. Tough break!

9. Elton John

The singer is one of the most famous British musicians on the planet, and his hit records have earned as much as $200 million. Nothing is set in stone yet, but John publicly considered holding his wealth back from his sons Zachary and Elijah.

John, with husband David Furnish and their two sons.The Mirror

"Of course, I want to leave my boys in a very sound financial state," he explained to The Mirror. "But it's terrible to give kids a silver spoon. It ruins their life."

10. Tony Curtis

Five must have been a lucky number for this Oscar-nominated actor. He was married five times, had five children, and left everything in his estate to his fifth wife Jill Vandenburg.

Tony Curtis and his daughter Jamie Lee Curtis.

Meanwhile, his daughter Allegra says the actor's sons and daughters, including actress Jamie Lee Curtis, were "all blindisided" by his decision.

11. Nigella Lawson

Like Elton John, this chef who stars in Nigella Kitchen is reluctant to leave her kids with any of the money from her cookbook and TV show empire.

The Sun

"I am determined that my children should have no financial security," she said to My Weekly in 2008. "It ruins people not having to earn money." Still, she won't leave her kids to starve when she passes away either.

12. Sting

After finding huge success in The Police and as a solo act, Sting is worth at least $300 million, but warned his kids not to expect any of it.

"I told them there won't be much money left because we are spending it," he explained, adding that the money would only be "albatrosses round their necks."

Sting and his wife, with their daughter Micky.AP

But Sting insists things aren't tense in his home, because his six children are hard workers. "Obviously, if they were in trouble I would help them," he added. "But I've never really had to do that. They have the work ethic that makes them want to succeed on their own merit."

13. Bill Gates

While he lost his spot earlier this year to Amazon's Jeff Bezos, Gates is bound to become the world's richest man again sometime soon. But like Warren Buffett, he's committed to giving away most of his $90.2 billion fortune.

Gates with his wife and children.Bizpreneur

The tech billionaire's three children will likely "inherit" the family charities including The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, instead of their dad's mountains of cash. But he says that's for the best anyways.

14. Simon Cowell

The host of reality competitions like American Idol and The X Factor brings in over $95 million a year, making him one of the wealthiest men in the UK. But Cowell's young son Eric shouldn't expect to get any of his famous dad's money.

Cowell and his son Eric. Hello!

Cowell insists that he doesn't believe on passing wealth from one generation to the next, and plans to donate his family fortune to some charity for "kids and dogs" instead.

15. Kevin O'Leary

Surprise, surprise. "Mr. Wonderful" has pretty lofty expectations for his kids. Once they've gotten their education, O'Leary expects them to move out. And they shouldn't count on an inheritance either.

Business Insider

"If you don't start out your life with the fear of not being able to feed yourself and your family, then what motivates you to go get a job?" the investment guru told Time.

Still, he does have a soft spot after all. O'Leary says he's setting up trust funds for his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

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