Paulina Porizkova wants an elective share of Ric Ocasek’s estate

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Ric Ocasek passed away in September of this year. It was sad. He had been in poor health for a while. Ocasek and his wife Paulina Porizkova had been married for 28 years when they separated in 2018. She emphasized that she still loved him, and they still lived together in their New York home in what would be the last year of his life. She reportedly took care of him, and she was the one to find his body when she was bringing him his cup of tea one morning. A few months after his passing, his will became public and as it turned out, Ocasek had written Paulina out of his will. He said, in the will, that she didn’t deserve anything, because she “abandoned” him. It sounded like a huge legal headache. Guess what?

The supermodel widow of Cars frontman Ric Ocasek says she is seeking part of his estate, despite the fact that he disinherited her claiming she “abandoned” him, new court papers reveal. Widow Paulina Porizkova is entitled to 1/3 of the estate under New York law — unless it can be proven in court that she did indeed abandon the musician. Ocasek, 75, was discovered dead by Porizkova in his townhouse Sept. 15. The pair called it quits in May 2018 after 28 years of marriage.

Porizkova — who hired a lawyer in the case last month — filed papers in Manhattan surrogate’s court Tuesday saying, “I, Paulina Porizkova, the surviving spouse of the Decedent, do hereby exercise the personal right of election,” and “elect to take my elective share.”

Ocasek’s estate is worth at least $5.115 million, according to court papers filed with his will.

“Usually, it’s automatic but here there is a factual question because Ocasek’s will said she abandoned him,” an un-involved Manhattan trusts and estates lawyer said, asking his name not be used. “That needs to be determined by the court or by way of settlement. “If she did abandon him, then she may be disqualified from exercising the right of election against her husband’s will,” the lawyer said, adding “She appears to have been looking after him in the final days. I doubt she’ll get nothing.”

Ocasek, in his will, appeared to have also cut out two of his six sons — though not the children he had with Porizkova. Those sons, Adam and Christopher, have hired lawyer August Venturini who said he couldn’t say yet if they would fight their disinheritance.

“Right now, we are exercising my clients’ right to obtain information from the Estate. We’ll see where it leads,” Venturini said.

[From Page Six]

$5 million sounds like a lot, but with six kids – two of whom were disinherited – and an estranged widow AND all of their lawyers, that money isn’t going very far. It’s in everybody’s best interests for the sake of the inheritance to get this done quickly and make peace with some settlements. Ric Ocasek basically left a ticking time bomb in his will, and I wonder if that’s what he wanted? I said before that Ocasek’s goal seemed to be getting the final, petty word. Was that his intent, just to be petty and to punish the people closest to him?

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30 Responses to “Paulina Porizkova wants an elective share of Ric Ocasek’s estate”

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  1. Rhys says:

    Paulina looks a lot like Charlotte Rampling.

    And $5 million is nothing at their level of living. That’s upper middle-class, not A-list celebrity. She should fight for the half.

    • Raina says:

      They’ll all fight her if she goes for half and the lawyers will win here. Not that much money to go through this level of acrimony. I say get a mediator, fire every attorney and split the damn thing evenly between EVERYONE. Move on.
      This Ric guy was an ass to do this knowing what it would cause. I hate when people leave messes like this creating family discourse. I wouldn’t have taken care of my EX husband if he was this type of asshole. She’s a better woman than me.

    • (TheOG)@Jan90067 says:

      There is a LOT more money tied up in real estate and royalties (of Cars’ music and the music that he produced for others). That $5M might just be the cash on hand in accounts. PP is worth a lot on her own. She wouldn’t file for just over $1M, which would reduce her own sons’ portion of the estate.

      Count on a forensic accounting of RO’s holdings as this moves on.

      • anon says:

        Precisely. This isn’t about “$5M.” It’s about long-term royalties and other potential income. As the old saying goes, celebrities are usually worth more dead than alive. Prince had – how many? dozens? – of claimants after his death, which has been narrowed down to six, several of whom he probably didn’t even have a relationship with.

        That said, I feel for RO’s disinherited children. None of us, obviously, know what their relationship was with their father, but he did, indeed, leave a big public mess.

    • J.Mo says:

      It also doesn’t include trusts he may have set up for children during his lifetime.

  2. Adrianna says:

    There won’t be much left by the time the haggling is done and the lawyers get their cut. After 28 years of marriage she deserves a portion of his estate.

    • Mumbles says:

      Yes, she was with him for a long time, she raised children with him, and it sounds like she was taking care or at least checking in on him at the end of his life.

  3. Renee says:

    I’m wondering if the rights to his music will be the real paycheck? The $5 million won’t go far but whomever has ownership rights to his music, I would think that will be more valuable in the future.

    • anon says:

      Bingo. THIS^^^^

      • Chante Brown says:

        Usually when an artist dies, the REAL money lies in the future merchandising, which can (and usually is) worth far more than even their music portfolios. The royalties on the music have a statutory limit and a dwindling return. Merchandising can take on a huge second life that grows perpetually and the earnings potential is highly lucrative. My guess is the family will already be talking to their lawyers about this angle of the estate battle.

  4. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    I hate it there are people like this. But I don’t know the dynamics at all. She was with him so long, and I always loved their hooking up, but I don’t know how they treated each other. Rich people can be so hurtfully spiteful. If she’d only pulled a Lannister and torn lol.

  5. Flamingo says:

    I can’t believe he is only worth 5M. After the attorneys get their cut, you are looking at 3.5-4M split up between seven people. That money is going to run out quickly. Hopefully she has stashed away some sort of nest egg of her own.

  6. Betsy says:

    Was he always a jerk, or did his sickness affect him?

    • Eliza_ says:

      When you file divorce usually your lawyers will encourage you to write out your spouse in your will in no certain terms. She should be eligible to the sum she’d get in the divorce (money/ property) but not the rights to the music which i think is really what everyone will end up fighting over.

  7. Astrid says:

    Playing Devil’s Advocat and a non-lawyer…How far along in their separation/divorce were they at when Rick passed away? Seems like this could play into not being granted an inheritance

  8. MissG says:

    What a piece of crap Ric turned out to be. Reminds me of my crusty 75-year-old father-in-law who rewrites his will whenever one of his adult children make him mad.

  9. Kathryn says:

    Maybe she left him when he got diagnosed and he felt betrayed?

  10. Mrs. Peel says:

    A petty, cheap man right up until the end. I hope PP gets half the estate, and the remainder split amongst the children.

  11. tealily says:

    This whole situation just makes me sad. I, too, am shocked that the estate is only valued at 5 mil (I mean, I should be so lucky! That’s more than I’ll likely see in a lifetime). The abandonment claim is so strange, when she was clearly still living with him and bringing him his morning tea. Was she seeing someone else post-split and he was bitter about it? Or was his illness taking over?

    • J.Mo says:

      Yes, she was seeing someone publicly. I think she was hopeful that she and Ric would still be friends and family and that Ric was okay with that when they were actually playing family. He was obviously bitter about the split.

  12. lucy2 says:

    Whatever the situation, I hope it works out fairly and no one is angry. So many families and relationships get torn apart fighting over this stuff.
    I’m curious which 2 kids he cut out completely. Apparently he was married 3 times and had 2 kids with each wife?

    • TheOtherSam says:

      He did have six sons, the youngest two with Paulina. The eldest two, by his first wife, were the ones cut out. They were the kids born and raised in Ohio that he left behind when he moved to Boston to continue his career.

      They must have had some kind of contact or decent relationship with Ric and Paulina though, since she vacationed just last year with one of their wives and kids. They have crossed tagged each other on soc media in the past.

      Would the 1/3 elective share that Paulina is entitled to by law surpass what she would have received in the divorce? She and Ric were separated for some time and their townhouse for sale at his death, so negotiations were clearly ongoing for a while. Wouldn’t his heirs (I’m guessing his four sons, inc Paulina’s) have to cut her in, since she otherwise would receive a post-mortem settlement anyway? Not sure how the law addresses this type of situation.

  13. Mrs.Krabapple says:

    In New York, a spouse gets part of the estate, even if the decedent didn’t want them to have anything. One of the few exceptions is “abandonment” which is why I suspect Rick’s lawyers used that word in his will. But I doubt the facts will show true abandonment, so I suspect Paulina will be able to get her share under NY law.

  14. ME says:

    I won’t comment on Paulina because that’s a whole other issue, and I guess they weren’t legally divorced yet so that plays in to it. But, if a parent doesn’t want to give inheritance to a child for whatever reason, the child should not be able to fight that in court. I think that’s bullsh*t. If I feel like my child doesn’t deserve my money and I state it clearly in a Will, then no way should they be able to still go after some inheritance. What the f*ck is a Will for then?

    • Minxx says:

      Sometimes people write a kid or spouse out of their will influenced by shady characters that hang around rich people, gaining influence only to get the money. There are also other blatantly unfair situations. Kids or wives have every right to contest a will. The court is there to sort it out.

    • Laura-j says:

      I was very close to my dad, he wrote me out of the will. My step mom who never liked me much got left everything. It hurt. I didn’t fight it, but pretty sure she influenced the decision, Dad and I were never estranged for a minute… so it happens.

      • ME says:

        @ Laura-j

        I can see in situations like yours there was an issue of control since you were close to your father. But if the person is of sound mind and isn’t being influenced by anyone, they do have the right to leave their money to whomever they choose. Inheritance really isn’t a right or something that should be expected. Also, from what I’ve heard you must leave a legitimate reason in your Will for excluding a child. If you were close, it is odd he would leave you out without an explanation as to why.

  15. TorontoBeach says:

    If they had finalized their divorce, she would’ve got half of everything considering how long they were married. Of course that would be if a pre-nup didn’t exist. It doesn’t make sense he would be allowed to give away all his/family assets as he wished until the assets had been divided with a separation agreement/finalized divorce.

  16. Riley says:

    Seems like he should be worth a lot more than 5 million!! That’s nothing compared to how successful he was back in the day.