Casey Kasem Gets a Conservator, but Whereabouts Unknown

By Daniel Taylor, Esq. on May 13, 2014 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

For more than 30 years, Casey Kasem was the voice of American pop music as host of "America's Top 40" and "Casey's Countdown."

But after years of failing health and an ongoing dispute between his children and current wife Jean, The Associated Press reports that a Los Angeles judge has named Kasem's daughter Kerri as his temporary conservator, giving her limited control over his finances and healthcare decisions.

There's just one problem: No one can find him.

Kasem's Family Feud

Kasem began his radio career while in the Army in the 1950s, and became known nationwide in the '70s as host of "America's Top 40," a weekly countdown of top radio songs which featured Kasem's signature sign-off, "Keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars."

In recent years, however, Kasem has become known for the protracted and public battle being waged between his current wife Jean and his children from his first marriage. According the The Hollywood Reporter, shortly after retiring in 2009, Kasem's health began to decline and his middle child Julie, a licensed physician, sought to enforce a 2007 advanced health care directive placing Julie and her cardiologist husband in charge of Kasem's care.

The children claimed that Kasem's wife Jean had been concealing their father's condition from them. Joined by Kasem's brother Mouner Kasem, the children protested outside their father's home and went public with their concerns that Kasem -- whose estate is reportedly valued at $80 million -- was suffering from advanced Parkinson's disease, could no longer walk or speak, and was essentially being held captive by his wife.

After a court found that a 2011 document granting power of attorney to Jean Kasem superceded the earlier directive, two of Kasem's three children reached a confidential agreement with Jean Kasem, and all three children were permitted to see their father.

Lawyer: 'I Have No Idea Where He Is'

Kerri Kasem, who declined to join her siblings in signing the previous agreement, continued to fight her stepmother in court and, as the AP reports, was named her father's conservator Monday.

This came after Craig Marcus, an attorney appearing for Kasem's wife Jean, told the courtroom, "I have no idea where he is," but that Kasem was "no longer in the United States."

An attorney for Kerri Kasem said that Kasem's children believe their father had been taken to an Indian reservation in Washington state. The judge ordered a court-appointed attorney to locate Kasem and appointed a doctor to review Kasem's medical care, meaning that this likely won't be the last you'll hear of this case.

Follow FindLaw for Consumers on Facebook and Twitter (@FindLawConsumer).

Related Resources:

Copied to clipboard