Anne Heche’s 20-year-old son, Homer Laffoon, was awarded control of the late actress’ estate after a legal battle with her ex-partner, James Tupper.
The court chose on November 30, 2002, to give Laffoon the position of permanent general administrator of Heche’s estate despite Tupper’s objections.
Heche passed away on August 11, 2022, and left behind two children, Laffoon and Atlas Tupper. Her passing sparked a legal battle when Tupper, on October 3, filed documents petitioning for Laffoon to be removed as temporary executor of Heche’s estate.
Tupper had requested that an independent administrator be appointed instead. Tupper, who is Atlas’ father, had also fought with Laffoon over legal guardianship of Heche’s youngest son.
After months of a fierce legal battle, the court ruled in favor of Laffoon. His position as general administrator is likely to be permanent as he can only be removed if any evidence surfaces of fraud or embezzlement.
However, contrary to Tupper’s previous claims, the judge found no evidence of wrongdoing on Laffoon’s part. As a result, he can now proceed with the administration of Heche’s estate.
Laffoon’s lawyer stated, “We believe the court reached the correct result this morning, both legally and equitably, and are glad to have this phase of the process behind us.”
Why did James Tupper object to Homer Laffoon’s control of the estate?
When Tupper first filed his objection to Laffoon being the executor of Heche’s estate, he explained his reasoning with a legal claim. Tupper claimed that he was trying to preserve the harmony and bond between Laffoon and Atlas.
He stated that the estate was too complex for Laffoon to run and would likely cause issues that a “private professional fiduciary” would be better equipped to handle. He also produced an email from 2011 in which Heche seemingly named him as executor of her state.
However, Laffoon quickly clapped back and petitioned for Tupper to have no claim to the estate. Tupper was not in a relationship with Heche at the time of her passing, and the email was deemed invalid.
Meanwhile, the fight for the estate was also entwined with Tupper’s and Laffoon’s fight for legal guardianship of Atlas. In both his fight for the estate and guardianship, Tupper claimed that Laffoon had been hostile in his treatment of Atlas.
Furthermore, he stated that Homer had a “conflict of interest” in the guardianship battle because it related to Heche’s estate. The court eventually granted Laffoon the position of guardian ad litem.
If the need to appoint a different guardian for Atlas had arisen, it likely would’ve been a neutral party. If Tupper had been granted the position, it would’ve given him some control over Heche’s estate due to Atlas’s inheritance.
What happened to Anne Heche?
The legal battle for Heche’s estate reached its conclusion more than three months after her passing. The actress was best known for her roles in Psycho, Six Days, Seven Nights, and Donnie Brasco.
Throughout her career, she garnered several accolades, including a Primetime Emmy Award. She also gained attention for her personal life, including her high-profile relationship with Ellen DeGeneres.
On August 5, 2022, she was involved in a serious car accident that left her critically injured after she crashed her Mini Cooper into a home in Los Angeles, California.
The accident started a fire that took 60 firefighters to put out and resulted in Heche being trapped in the car for nearly an hour. She was rushed to the hospital and remained on life support for several days.
She ultimately passed away from her injuries on August 11. At the time of the accident, an investigation was started into allegations that she had been under the influence when the crash occurred.
However, the investigation was dropped after her passing. One of the residents of the home she crashed into filed a lawsuit against her estate, with the result of that lawsuit still pending.More: Anne Heche