The latest update on Michael Lockwood’s request to serve as guardian ad litem to his twin daughters, Harper and Finley, seems to have moved in his direction.
Last Thursday, Lockwood filed a petition in the Los Angeles County Superior Court requesting to be guardian ad litem to his daughters, whom he shares with the late Lisa Marie Presley, amid the Presleys’ ongoing trust battle.
Per ET, at a custody hearing on Tuesday – in which Lockwood was not in attendance – Lisa Marie’s attorney, Gary Fishbein, asked to dismiss the case because there are no further pending actions in the custody battle between Lockwood and Presley, saying his client is “sadly no longer with us”.
Seeing as though Lockwood is the only surviving parent, Fishbein pointed out that custody will be granted to him, assuming no other family member disputes his claim to his daughters during the upcoming probate court case in April.
Judge Joseph Lipner, who is overseeing the case, has not yet granted Fishbein’s request for dismissal.
Prior to her death, Lisa Marie and Michael were in an ongoing custody battle following the finalization of their divorce in 2021.
ET also spoke with entertainment attorney, Richard Roth, who gave his professional insight on Lockwood’s intentions in filing to be guardian ad litem.
“Guarding over the business is really what Mr. Lockwood is trying to get. This is akin to Britney Spears, and her father, who became the guardian over her,” Roth compared. “Both the estate of Elvis and the estate of Lisa Marie would go into their hands, and he essentially wants to control the money of these girls because they are young, and because he’s claiming that he’s the proper one, he’s the one suited to essentially take over the finances of these two young girls.”
“So it’s clear that Mr. Lockwood, being the father, is entitled to representation. That’s his right as a parent,” he continued. “He’s the only parent that’s alive, so he certainly has plenty of rights. But this is different. This is who is going to essentially run the business, where the money is going to go, into what bank account, who controls the bank account. It’s very different than raising your children and being in charge of their business, which is what he’s seeking.”
“If he can prove to the court that his interests are genuine, and that it’s for his daughters, which it may very well be, then he very well could be [named] the guardian,” he concluded.
Michael Lockwood has filed a petition to be guardian ad litem to his twin daughters, Harper and Finley, as the Presley family trust battle continues.
Lockwood, who shares his daughters with his ex-wife, and recently passed, Lisa Marie Presley, filed the legal documents in Los Angeles County Superior Court last Thursday, in an attempt to serve as guardian to his 14-year-old daughters and represent them in an upcoming hearing in probate court that takes place on April 13.
ET obtained the documents, which partly read, “…the minor is a beneficiary of a trust at issue before the probate court in the above-referenced case. The minor requires appointment of a guardian ad litem to represent her interests in the proceeding.”
Lockwood added, “There is no conflict regarding appointment because the proposed guardian is not a beneficiary of the trust instrument at issue.”
Lawyers for Harper and Finley “filed a declaration in support of Lockwood’s petition,” per People, and the daughters both signed forms consenting to Lockwood representing them as a guardian.
This is just the newest addition of legal issues surrounding the Presley family’s ongoing trust battle regarding Elvis’ estate and a 15% stake in Elvis Presley Enterprises (EPE). Following Lisa Marie’s death in January, Priscilla Presley filed a petition to question the “authenticity and validity” of a 2016 amendment that removed her – and Lisa’s former business manager, Barry Siegel – as co-trustee to the estate, and appointed it to Lisa’s children, Riley and Ben Keough.
Tension has since been high between Priscilla and Riley, with reports stating the two “aren’t communicating” as of now.
“It has been a very tense and heartbreaking few weeks for both Riley and Priscilla,” a source shared with ET. “Riley has been mourning the loss of her mother and is heartbroken to have to deal with a trust dispute with a family member. Priscilla is adamant that she has a valid case and that she will prevail in court. Riley and Priscilla aren’t communicating at this time, but have been in communication through lawyers.”
“She is heartbroken that this has turned into a public matter and knows her mother would never want this,” the source added, stating that Riley would have much rather had this legal dispute settled more privately than it has been. “Riley is very stressed at the moment and has been trying to keep a positive attitude and outlook ahead of her new series [Daisy Jones & The Six] coming out. Her daughter and husband have been keeping her in good spirits.”