Johnny Hallyday’s children to contest will leaving ‘everything’ to fourth wife 

The French rocker, who sold more than 100 million albums over the course of his 60-year career, died in December of lung cancer.

Lawyers for the singer’s 34-year-old biological daughter Laura Smet said on Monday that their client had been “stunned and pained” to discover that she had been cut out from the will, which may be worth as much as £89million (€100 million).

Mrs Smet’s half-brother David Hallyday, 51, is also set to challenge the will, his lawyer said.

Under the will, which was drawn up under Californian law, the rock legend’s two biological children will get “nothing”.

Lawyers Emmanuel Ravanas, Pierre-Olivier Sur and Hervé Temime said in a statement: “If the will is not contested, Laura Smet will get nothing: no material goods, no stake in his artistic legacy, no souvenir, no guitar, no motorbike – not even a signed cover from the song ‘Laura’ he dedicated to her.” 

Mrs Smet’s lawyers also argued that the document runs counter to French inheritance laws, which protect children from being left out of a will. A wife does not automatically inherit all of her husband’s estate and generally has to share it with his children.

The lawyers said: “This isn’t just a question of money, but a question of his children’s moral rights”.

If Mr Hallyday’s will is ruled valid, the singer’s wealth and rights will eventually go to Jade and Joy, the two girls he adopted in Vietnam.

The rocker, who was born Jean-Philippe Smet, had drawn up and signed four different wills, according to the French news channel LCI. The one currently being contested is the last document he signed.

The ‘French Elvis,’ whose lifestyle involved a lot of hard drugs and alcohol, died in December aged 74 after a battle with lung cancer.

He was married five times, including twice to the same woman, actress Adeline Blondiau. He married Laeticia Boudou in 1996 when she was just 21.

The singer’s wife responded to the controversy shortly after the family feud was exposed, telling the AFP news agency that she was “disgusted” by the media buzz over her husband’s estate and was “determined” to protect his legacy.