Judge stops auction sale of Elvis’ Graceland home

A Tennessee judge has blocked the planned auction sale of Elvis Presley’s iconic Graceland residence.

The decision comes just days after it was reported that actor Riley Keough – who is also the granddaughter of the late music icon – was taking legal action to halt the court-approved sale of Graceland.

Best recognised for her roles in Daisy Jones & the Six, Logan Lucky and Mad Max: Fury Road, Keough is the daughter of Elvis’ only child, Lisa Marie. She is currently the owner of the iconic 13.8-acre estate in Memphis, Tennessee, known as Graceland, and came into the position following the death of her mother last January.

The fate of the iconic residence was thrown into question due to events stemming back to 2018, when a deed of trust was allegedly signed by Lisa Marie and secured a $3.8million (£2.9m) loan from Naussany Investments and Private Lending LLC in Missouri. The company claimed that Graceland was used as collateral in the loan, which was never paid back.

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Keough has been instrumental in fighting these claims, and stated that the Tennessee residence shouldn’t go to auction as her mother never signed anything over nor borrowed any money from the company.

Her lawsuit was filed on May 15 and also saw Keough claim that the creditor – identified in a public notice of sale as Naussany Investments and Private Lending LLC – doesn’t exist, and the loan’s notary public never notarised it.

She and the rest of Elvis Presley Enterprises also accuse the planned sale of being a scheme by the company and “fraud”.

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Elvis Presley's Graceland estate is seen in Memphis, Tennessee
Elvis Presley’s Graceland estate is seen in Memphis, Tennessee. CREDIT: Mike Brown/Getty Images

Now, it has been confirmed that she has been successful in her pursuit to have the auction stopped, as a judge in Tennessee has ruled against the sale.

According to a court spokesperson talking to BBC News, yesterday (May 22) saw Shelby County Chancellor JoeDae Jenkins issue a temporary injunction against the proposed auction.

“As the court has now made clear, there was no validity to the claims. There will be no foreclosure,” Graceland and Elvis Presley Enterprises told the outlet following the judge’s decision.

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“Graceland will continue to operate as it has for the past 42 years, ensuring that Elvis fans from around the world can continue to have a best-in-class experience when visiting his iconic home.

Naussany Investments and Private Lending LLC have not publicly shared a statement following the claims, and they have not responded to BBC’s request for comment.

The legendary singer first purchased the mansion back in 1957, and lived there until his death in 1977. In the years since, it has been a destination for fans who want to pay their respects to the musician.

Elvis is buried there, as are his parents, his daughter Lisa Marie, and her son Benjamin Keough.

Lisa Marie Presley, Priscilla Presley, and Riley Keough in 2022 in Hollywood, California.
Lisa Marie Presley, Priscilla Presley, and Riley Keough in 2022 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images)

The push from Keough to prevent the auction came following much turmoil around the Elvis Presley estate over the past few years. Last November for instance, it was reported that the late singer’s widow Priscilla Presley had her settlement with granddaughter Riley Keough over Lisa Marie Presley’s estate approved by the courts.

The settlement stated that Priscilla can now be buried as close to her ex-husband Elvis Presley as possible at the Graceland estate when she dies, and that her son Navarone Garibaldi can participate in the memorial ceremony.

In addition, Priscilla is set to receive a $1million (£810,000) payment from Lisa-Marie’s $25million (£20.2m) life insurance trust, as well as $100,000 a year for the next 10 years for her services as a “special advisor” to Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.

The tension between the two arose around the sudden death of Lisa Marie Presley, which threw the inheritance of the Presley estate into question.

Lisa Marie, as the only child, had become the sole inheritor following Elvis’ death, although the site was also managed by Priscilla.

When the trust was dissolved in 1993 on Lisa Marie’s 25th birthday, she formed a new trust, which also retained her mother as manager of the estate and co-trustee. However, Priscilla Presley filed a legal challenge disputing the validity of daughter Lisa Marie‘s will last year, after it was reportedly altered in 2016 to remove Priscilla and a former business manager, Barry Siegel, as trustees.

The 14-acre compound was opened to the public in the ‘80s as a music history theme park. It is still open today and, according to the venue, it attracts roughly 600,000 visitors a year.

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