Riley Keough to Pay Priscilla Presley to End Family Trust Dispute

Keough had been locked in a court battle with her grandmother, fighting for control over the family trust under a sole trustee settlement.

Two women show their soiled hands in front of a theater where they have left their handprints
Priscilla Presley, left, and her granddaughter Riley Keough have settled their disagreement over control of the Presley family trust.Credit…Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images

According to court documents that were made public on Tuesday, Riley Keough, the actress, has agreed to give a one-time payment to Priscilla Presley, her grandmother and the ex-wife of Elvis Presley, as a component of a settlement that will settle a conflict regarding the management of the family trust.

The lawyers for the parties had sought to keep the details of their confidential agreement. However, it appears that there is a list of papers indicating a payment of $1 million.

Marie Lisa Keough will become the sole trustee of the Promenade Trust, also known as the official entity of the settlement, after January’s death. In a document filed earlier this year challenging the validity of a 2016 petition related to Presley’s fees, Ms. Keough agreed to cover Presley’s legal fees, which could amount to as much as $400,000.

Ms. Keough also agreed to retain Ms. Presley as a “special advisor” to the trust, for a period of 10 years during which she would receive an undisclosed annual amount.

Following the acquisition of the funds from her mother’s life-insurance plan, Ms. Keough would provide the compensation in return for Ms. Presley stepping down from the trust, as indicated in the paperwork. The conditions of the arrangement still require the endorsement of a judge in the Los Angeles Superior Court, where they were submitted.

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They are avoiding the intra-family litigation spectacle, which could have been detrimental to the best interests and wishes of Lisa’s family. By avoiding litigation, they are saving significant legal fees and settling the pending claims in Priscilla’s petition.

The agreement, if authorized, would resolve months of legal disputes between Ms. Keough and Ms. Presley.

(Without any explanation)(Mr. Keough passed away in 2020 at the age of 27.) In the case of Lisa Marie’s demise, it had also assigned Ms. Keough and Benjamin Keough, her sibling, as co-trustees. Priscilla Presley swiftly submitted legal documents contesting a 2016 modification to the trust, allegedly approved by Lisa Marie, which had ousted Priscilla and the family’s previous business manager, Barry Siegel, as trustees. Lisa Marie Presley unexpectedly passed away at 54 years old and was later interred at Graceland alongside Elvis.

Priscilla’s lawyers argued in court that the current fight she was involved in was asking the court to recognize her as a trustee. They claimed that Marie’s signature on the amendment was “inconsistent” and potentially fraudulent. The court papers also asserted that the amendment was never delivered to Ms. Presley during Marie’s lifetime, thus invalidating it.

Last month, at a hearing, the lawyers for Ms. Presley and Ms. Keough announced that a settlement had been reached by the parties involved, although it was not publicly described.

The hearing for the settlement is scheduled to officially take place on August 4th, as decided by Judge Lynn Scaduto. The lawyers were required to submit additional petitions by the deadline, which was on Monday.

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Lisa Marie, as reported by The New York Times, withdrew $1.25 million in income from the trust last year. The trust, which retains 15 percent of Elvis Presley Enterprises and the main Graceland house in Memphis, channels the Presley family’s share of those earnings. With annual earnings of over $100 million, the Elvis brand remains a lucrative business.

In a paragraph that talked about a lump sum, a “one million dollar payment” mentioned earlier is scheduled to be paid simultaneously with the legal fees linked to the dispute, which involved Ms. Keough’s responsibility in handling. Two sections from the court records, made public on Tuesday, withheld the precise sum of money that Ms. Presley is set to receive as the lump-sum payment.

The agreement also grants Ms. Presley the privilege to be laid to rest at Graceland, in close proximity to her ex-spouse.

Sheelagh McNeill provided

Subscribe to Paper Today’s Reprints Order. The dispute between Trust Presley has been settled. The headline of this article appears on Page 4, Section C, in the print version of the New York edition.

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