The recent passing of Elizabeth Taylor has many wondering what will now happen with Ms. Taylor’s sizeable fortune? According to this article in Forbes Ms. Taylor’s fortune includes not only the millions she made in the Hollywood movie industry, but the even greater amount made she made with her fragrance line.
“In her most savvy business move, Taylor licensed her name to Elizabeth Arden and came out with several perfumes, including Passion, White Diamonds, and Black Pearls. Her fragrances have reaped a reported $200 million in sales over the years. Perfumes are one of the highest margin products out there, which is why celebrities love them. Taylor was doing it before anyone.”
Furthermore, a recent article in ABC News reports that Elizabeth Arden has no plans to discontinue the Taylor brand anytime soon. “White Diamonds remains a best seller almost 20 years after its 1991 introduction, a testimony to her transcendent and enduring appeal… Our best tribute to Elizabeth Taylor will be to continue the legacy of the brands she created and loved so much.”
The question now is, what will happen to this sizeable (and growing) fortune now that Ms. Taylor has passed away? ABC News has some guesses: “On the question of what could happen to her estate now that she has passed away, many speculate it will be distributed to her four children and 10 grandchildren [with whom she is reported to have been on good terms]… And Taylor most likely bequeathed a substantial amount of money to her charitable work. Taylor was a devoted AIDS activist, helping form the American Foundation for AIDS Research in 1985 and the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation in 1991.”
Thus far no last will and testament has been released, which suggests that Ms. Taylor may have had a trust, an extensive document which protects your family and assets while remaining private. But given what we do know about Ms. Taylor, it is not unreasonable to believe that her estate will be split between her family and her charitable endeavors, especially the AIDS Foundations to which she gave so much in life.