The Curious Case of Tammy Wynette’s Estate — Who Inherited Her Money?

Country music singer-songwriter Tammy Wynette left behind a fortune of $900,000 when she died of heart failure.

Pretty Honore - Author

Feb. 26 2024, Published 12:38 p.m. ET

Tammy Wynette poses for a portrait at home in 1995 in Franklin, Tennessee.
Source: Harry Langdon/Getty Images

Over the years, the country music scene has seen artists come and go, but few were as prolific as Mississippi-born country singer Tammy Wynette.

The Grammy-winning actress made her musical debut in 1971 with her debut studio album, Your Good Girl’s Gonna Go Bad, which dominated the charts and catapulted her into the spotlight.

Article continues below advertisement

At the height of her career, Tammy was crowned the First Lady of Country Music. However, behind the scenes, the singer was fighting a silent battle with substance abuse.

The tale of Tammy’s life, whirlwind romance with George Jones, and tragic death was depicted in Showtime’s George & Tammy. Following the 2022 series' debut, many viewers were left with more questions than answers about Tammy’s tragic tale. One of the biggest mysteries of all is — who inherited Tammy’s money after she died?

Tammy Wynette in the dining room of her home in Nashville, Tennessee.
Source: Paul Harris/Getty Images
Article continues below advertisement

Who inherited Tammy Wynette’s money after she died?

According to Celebrity Net Worth, Tammy was worth $900,000 when she died.

Tammy’s fifth and final husband, George Richey, was given control of Tammy’s estate following her death. Each of her grandchildren was left $10,000 while her daughters inherited nothing.

However, George & Tammy suggests that the money went to George against Tammy’s wishes. The Showtime series featured a scene where George purposefully destroys the notepad where Tammy wrote her real will.

Not long after the series aired, George’s family attempted to set the record straight.

Article continues below advertisement
Tammy Wynette smiles with her 5th husband George Richey on April 7, 1982 in the garden of her home in Nashville, Tennessee.
Source: Paul Harris/Getty Images

Tammy Wynette and George Richey in April 1982

George Richey’s family is suing Showtime — here’s why.

After George & Tammy, the Richey family followed up with a lawsuit against Showtime in January 2024 that alleged a breach of contract.

According to the suit, Tammy’s daughter Georgette Jones — who was a consulting producer for George & Tammy — violated a 2015 settlement agreement between the parties that barred her from making “disparaging” comments about Richey.

Article continues below advertisement

George’s second wife, Sheila Slaughter Richey, and their child, Tatum Keys Richey, alleged that he was villainized in George & Tammy (per Variety).

“George Richey inherited the vast majority of her estate," the suit said.

"Tammy’s yellow notepads [in which she left significant money to her daughters] were never found. The obvious implication is that Richey destroyed the yellow notepads that contained Wynette’s will."

Later, Showtime released a statement that called the family’s bluff. The network published a statement that said: “We see no plausible basis for any claim against Showtime.”

Article continues below advertisement
Tammy Wynette smiles next to a bouquet of roses and sits on a floral print couch.
Source: Michael Putland/Getty Images

George Richey was accused of foul play in the case of Tammy Wynette’s death.

That isn’t the only legal trouble that the Richey family has seen over the years.

George & Tammy fueled speculation that it was George who got Tammy hooked on drugs, which led to her untimely death, but that wasn't the first time those claims had been made. It was that allegation that led police to exhume Tammy’s body in 1999.

In a $50 million wrongful death suit, Tammy’s four daughters alleged that George gave her the drugs that killed her. Later, a medical examiner concluded that she died of natural causes as the autopsy confirmed symptoms of heart failure.

With the legal drama surrounding George & Tammy, it seems unlikely that the singer will have a chance to rest in peace anytime soon.

More from Distractify

Latest Music News and Updates

    Opt-out of personalized ads

    © Copyright 2024 Distractify. Distractify is a registered trademark. All Rights Reserved. People may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice.