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Digging for answers in dispute over Salvador Dali's fortune

He melted clocks and exploded worlds, bodies and ideas of what art could and could not be. From his art to his clothes to his moustache, everything about surrealist painter Salvador Dali stimulated the senses.

If you drive west of Brevard County for a couple of hours, you can visit the St. Petersburg Dali museum and its famed collection of paintings, sculpture, photographs and more by the Spanish legend. His body was recently exhumed from a crypt beneath a museum in Spain to undergo DNA testing to determine if he was the father of a 61-year-old woman who claims to be an heir.

Dali died in 1989 with no recognized heirs to his wealth, a recent news article states.

In fact, the people who exhumed the body of the eccentric artist said his famed moustache is intact nearly three decades after his death.

Dali was buried in a crypt of his own design beneath a museum in his home town of Figueres in Catalonia, Spain. Samples taken from the body will be Maria Pilar Abel.

Abel said her mother worked in Dali's home and that the two had a liaison which resulted in her mother's pregnancy. Abel says her physical resemblance to the late painter is so strong that “the only thing I’m missing is a moustache.”

If her claim is proven to be accurate, under Spanish law she will own a quarter of Dali's estate estimated to be worth as $250 million.

We do not know how her claim will be resolved, but we do know that wills and trusts can protect heirs and assets. You can speak with an experienced estate planner at the Brevard County law firm of Cantwell & Goldman, PA.

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