Document Type


Publication Title


Publication Date



In one of its last opinions of the 2010 term, the U.S. Supreme Court decided, in Stern v. Marshall, that Anna Nicole Smith, a former Playboy model and minor television celebrity, will get nothing from the estate of her late husband, J. Howard Marshall II, a billionaire Texas oil tycoon.

This marks the end of a sixteen-year battle about whether J. Howard’s son, Pierce Marshall, wrongfully interfered with his father’s alleged plans to gift substantial sums of money and property to his new, and much younger, bride. In this column, I’ll explain the history of the litigation, including how it got all the way to the U.S Supreme Court (twice), and comment on why the Justices ruled as they did.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.