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Aretha Franklin's Son Fires Off Subpoenas, Demands Answers Over Late Singer's Assets

By Ryan Naumann

Aretha Franklin’s son Kecalf is firing off subpoenas demanding answers on his late mothers’ money and assets.

According to court documents obtained by The Blast, Kecalf Franklin has fired off a subpoena to lawyers who represent the personal representative, Sabrina Owens, and his mother’s estate.

Owens was put in place by the court following Aretha’s death and has been attempting to manage business deals and inventory. Kecalf believes Owens should be removed from the position and has been making moves to try and take over control.

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In newly filed documents, Owens lawyers, at the firm Thav Gross PV, have head to court demanding a judge shut down Kecalf’s subpoenas to them. The firm also represented Aretha for decades and handled various issues for her.

The subpoena sent by Kecalf is seeking information about Aretha’s finances, and wants all bank statements, financial records, wire transfer statements and trust information from 2012 until now.

The law firm is objecting to handing over the documents saying they aren’t relevant to the probate case. They claim if they had to respond to the subpoenas it would cause all other matters to be placed on hold. The firm claims it will take months and hundreds of hours to locate all the documents Kecalf is demanding.

A judge has yet to rule.


Earlier this year, Kecalf went to court to file docs seeking to take complete control of Aretha’s estate and wants Owens removed ASAP.

He accused her of mismanaging the estate and failing to perform her duties. Kecalf requested the judge appoint him as the successor and allow him to completely manage all aspects of Franklin’s business.

Kecalf claimed Owens has failed to provide the heirs any accounting or inventory of his mother’s property and assets. He wants to a full list of her jewelry, masters, Grammys, gold records and other awards.

He called Owens out for not communicating about the new business deals being negotiated. Kecalf claimed to know nothing about the announced television show Genius and the scheduled MGM biopic about Aretha’s life.

The heir even claimed they have been given no information about the investigation of her music catalog worth or the investigation of forgery of her checks. He also wants information about the audits being done on her IRS tax returns from 2012 – 2018.


Owens fired back denying Kecalf’s allegations she has left the heirs in the dark. She claims to be handling all responsibilities of the estate on time and properly.

She said inventory hasn’t been done yet but blamed the heirs for delays. Owens was adamant Kecalf and the other siblings have been updated constantly about the business affairs.

Owens also revealed since police did not press charges over alleged stolen property of Franklins, the estate is preparing a civil lawsuit. She asked the court to deny all requests by Kecalf and keep her on.

Recently, Kecalf went to court accusing the personal representative of the estate of failing to tell him or his siblings about a variety of issues.

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