Sabrina Owens, Aretha Franklin's niece and the personal representative of Franklin's estate, has reportedly found the late singer's handwritten wills, according to the Associated Press. The newly discovered wills were filed in probate court in Oakland County, Michigan on Monday.
The wills, three of them in total, were discovered by Owens after she came across a key for a locked cabinet. Two of the wills, from 2010, were found in said cabinet. The third will, from March 2014, was uncovered under the cushions of a couch. It was previously thought that Franklin left no will behind. Owens found all three wills in the same day at Franklin's home. The documents from 2014 detail which assets should be left to Franklin's family members.
A statement from Owens says "she remains neutral and wishes that all parties involved make wise choices on behalf of their mother, her rich legacy, the family and the Aretha Franklin estate..."
"If it’s clear and convincing evidence of your intentions, it’s a perfectly valid document," Patrick Simasko, an estate specialist, said per the AP. "The court wants to do everything in its power to fulfill the wishes of the person who passed away."
In the documents, Franklin requests that her son, Kecalf Franklin, be the personal representative of the estate. Franklin's sons previously agreed to Owens overseeing the estate.
A hearing to confirm the validity of the wills is scheduled to happen on June 12.
Aretha Franklin passed away on August 16, 2018 in Detroit, Michigan. The legendary artist was 76.