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Late pop star's estate is hailed as a model for others to follow

In January, the world was saddened to hear about the death of pop star David Bowie. Although his celebrity peaked in the 1970s and 80s, he continued to make music up until his death at the age of 69, when he died of cancer.

Mr. Bowie will be remembered not just for his music, but also for pushing cultural and gender boundaries. And in light of his passing, many are now learning another interesting aspect of David Bowie's life: His penchant for estate planning.

In some ways, Bowie's financial fortunes followed a familiar path among rock stars. After making millions of dollars early on, he eventually suffered financial struggles that nearly culminated in bankruptcy. In the 1990s, however, he worked with an investment banker to leverage his intellectual property and turn it into "Bowie Bonds." The move was reportedly a huge success that gave Bowie and his family considerable financial security. By the time Mr. Bowie passed away, his estate was worth an estimated $200 million.

The precise details of his estate plan are not public knowledge. But many believe that his interest in estate planning likely resulted in generous, tax-minimal bequests to his wife and two children.

Contrary to popular belief, estate planning is not just for the very wealthy. Each of us has an estate, and we all want to ensure that our assets get passed along to help those we love. The best way to achieve that goal (and many others) is to work with an experienced estate planning attorney.

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