Marriott empire battling over trust

There are some Georgia residents who will enter their later years in life possessing high net worth assets amassed through years of business ownership. For some, such assets will prompt discord among adult children and other beneficiaries; however, with appropriate elder law guidance, many legal problems may be avoided. It used to seem to that all was in order where the Marriott empire was concerned until John Willard Marriott III, son of hotel mogul Bill Marriott, publicly stated that he planned to sue his father and uncle to have them removed as trustees on a trust to which he has been barred access.

Friends, family members and the general public were apparently quite shocked to learn that John Marriott is saying not nice things about his father to reporters and is alleging breach of fiduciary duty against his father and uncle. The younger Marriott claims the rulers of his family empire are punishing him because he does not subscribe to the tenets of their faith and because he divorced his wife. He says he is finally coming forward with the truth about the home where he grew up, which until now, most people thought was a pristine image of wealth, prestige and familial harmony.

The son who stands in accusation against his father and uncle says they control a trust their parents established. He claims they are trying to cause him financial ruin. He estimates that because of current tensions within the extended family, he is losing millions of dollars every year.

The Marriott Family has staunchly denied the allegations that their son and sibling has levelled against them. As for the matter of trust, it will be left to a court to decide. Although most Georgia estate owners are not among the wealthiest families in the nation, even minor trust issues can lead to serious family discord and legal complications. An experienced estate planning and elder law attorney can be a great source of support at such times.

Source:, "The Marriott Family's Civil War", Marisa M. Kashino, Jan. 10, 2018

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