A new bill, introduced in both of Minnesota’s state legislature houses yesterday (May 9), invokes deceased music icon Prince while seeking to protect individuals’ post-mortem image.
Dubbed the PRINCE ("Personal Rights in Names Can Endure") Act, the new bill could give Prince’s estate (among others) the right to restrict use of his likeness, music and signature in commercial pursuits. State Rep. Joe Hoppe, who lives close to Prince’s Paisley Park residence, introduced the bill in the House of Representatives. "I’ve had people say, ‘Is it just prompted by the death of Prince?’" Hoppe told The Current. "Yeah, essentially it is. Really, what it’s doing is, it’s attempting to recognize the right of publicity postmortem."
The bill, if it became law, would make Minnesota the 17th state with post-death publicity control laws on the books. Washington enacted a similar law after Jimi Hendrix’s death in 1970.
Since Prince’s death, living relatives have struggled to find a will that identifies who controls his estate. Bremer Trust is the estate’s current special administrator.