The battle between the IRS and Michael Jackson's estate is heating up. While trial is not set to begin until 2017, the end result could make this a billion dollar case. The dispute centers around the value of Michael Jackson's likeness rights at the time of his death. The IRS claims that these rights were worth approximately $434 million, while the estate asserts that these were only worth about $2,100.
Most recently, the court has decided to exclude expert analysis on the valuation of Jackson's image. However, it has required certain key members of the legal team from Jackson's estate to be deposed, as well as one of Jackson's former business managers. Since this case has been pending since shortly after the pop star's death, nearly half a decade ago, the legal fees have become astronomical. It is estimated that by the time the case is through, if the IRS prevails, the estate will owe nearly $1 billion.