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Harper Lee’s will sealed by court order

An Alabama judge has sealed the will of reclusive author Harper Lee to protect her privacy following her death.
The writer, whose classic 1961 book To Kill a Mockingbird was beloved by generations of readers as a defining text on America’s problems with racism, passed away on 19 February (16), aged 89.
She famously went to great lengths to avoid the public spotlight following the huge success of her debut novel, and it remained her only published work until last year’s (15) Go Set A Watchman, which was written before To Kill A Mockingbird but rejected by publishers at the time.
On Monday (07Mar16), it was revealed her personal representative and attorney, Tonja Carter, had filed a request to keep Lee’s final wishes private, with the blessing of her family.
“As the Court is no doubt aware, Ms. Lee highly valued her privacy,” the lawyers wrote in the filing. “She did not wish for her private financial affairs to be matters of public discussion. Ms. Lee left a considerable legacy for the public in her published works; it is not the public’s business what private legacy she left for the beneficiaries of her will.”
The motion was approved by Monroe County Probate Judge Greg Norris last week (ends04Mar16), when he agreed with Carter’s concerns about the threat of public intrusion and signed a court order sealing the will from public view.
Only Lee’s heirs and next of kin are allowed access to the file, which has been labelled, “UNDER SEAL: DO NOT ALLOW PUBLIC INSPECTION,” according to The Associated Press.

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