Steve Jobs Net Worth 2017: Trusts Continue To Gain Income In Three Ways

Steve Jobs will increase his net worth in 2017 in three potential ways, but it is unlikely the public will hear much about his income generated from his image, his patents, or his stocks because Steve Jobs technically died with no assets.

When searching online for the net worth of Steve Jobs for 2017, there is often a lack of data that gives definitive proof. In contrast, each year, there is an update about the top earning dead celebrities and their comparative net worth statistics, but Steve Jobs’ name is often missing.

Although some facts about the net worth of Steve Jobs in 2017 or beyond might be obscured, his net worth at the time of his death in 2011 is estimated at $6 billion.

While it might not be highly publicized, Steve Jobs, like many celebrities, has continued to generate income after death. In fact, some celebrities, like Michael Jackson, have continued to generate millions in net worth each year.

In 2016, Michael Jackson took the top spot for net worth compared to any other celebrity after being dead for over six years, as previously reported by the Inquisitr.

Unlike Michael Jackson’s hefty estate tax that went to the IRS after he died, Steve Jobs died tax free, according to Trust Advisor. This is astounding considering Steve Jobs’ net worth was $6 billion when he died.

However, through careful estate planning, Steve Jobs sidetracked several tax payouts to the IRS. It is speculated by trust specialists that Steve Jobs likely got out of paying probate fees by having all of his money funneled into trusts.

In a July 16, 2010 file photo, Apple CEO Steve Jobs holds up iPhone 4
[Image by Paul Sakuma/AP Images]

For example, Steve Jobs owned 5.5 million shares in Apple and another 138 million shares in Disney stock, but moved them into trusts long before he died — and therefore died with no assets to his name.

The big question for Steve Jobs’ fans is how he determined inheritance, but an estate attorney was quoted by ABC in 2011 stating that “unless his family comes forth publicly, we’re not going to know how he is distributing his wealth.”

They also point out that through effective estate planning, Steve Jobs likely protected his family financially, and if they exceed certain amounts of money from these trusts, the IRS will take 35 cents for every dollar.

Regardless, there will always be more opportunities for the IRS to attempt to get as much money as possible from dead celebrities like Michael Jackson or Steve Jobs, and this posthumous income stream is from fees paid for the commercial use of their image.

Forbes debated in 2012 about who owns the rights to Steve Jobs’ image and it was determined that his was one of the most complicated intellectual property cases of all times.

Although many celebrities have an estate that sues because someone is using the image of the celeb, in this case Apple sued In Icons for using Steve Jobs’ image to create an action figure. One of the complications of the case is that Apple does not have a trademark registered on the physical likeness of Steve Jobs.

Another potential income stream for the IRS to tax posthumously is Steve Jobs’ net worth related to his patents. Since he died in 2011, Steve Jobs has had an estimated 140 or more patents approved with his name on the paperwork.

The Beatles and Steve Jobs
The Beatles had a legal conflict with Steve Jobs over the use of the name and logo "Apple." (Photo by Alexandra Wyman/Getty Images)

According to a Business Insider report from 2014, a third of Steve Jobs’ patents were approved after he died, and his first one was filed in 1983.

This means that if Steve Jobs is part of a patent that becomes as popular as the iPhone, his net worth beyond 2017 could dwarf the $6 billion he was worth when he died.

Since his death, Steve Jobs’ family has been enjoying his former net worth via inheritance through trusts, and some of his surviving family members are giving that money to charity. For example, Steve Jobs’ wife, Laurene Powell, was named as the fourth richest woman in the world in 2016 with an estimated $14 billion in net worth.

In a rare interview in 2016, Laurene Powell told Vogue that life after Steve Jobs has involved a deep immersion on her part with financing charity groups. In particular, Laurene Powell has started a project to re-envision American high school curriculum that was initially called the Emerson Collective.

Starting in 2015, Laurene Powell improved the Emerson Collective and made a goal to distribute $50 million of Steve Jobs’ net worth through the creation of XQ: The Super School Project. This national competition accepts applications from students, groups, teachers, and communities.

Steve Jobs’ two youngest children, Erin and Eve Jobs, are still completing their education. Steve Jobs’ only son, Reed Jobs, is now 25 years old, and finished an undergraduate degree from Stanford University in history and biology.

Steve Jobs’ eldest daughter, Lisa Brennan-Jobs, works as a writer and also received a share of her father’s net worth when he died, according to Fortune.

Steve Jobs’ sister, Mona Simpson, was estranged from her brother her whole adult life until 1982 when she met him for the first time when she was 25. In 1986, Mona Simpson won the Whiting Award for her book Anywhere But Here, and is a professor of English at UCLA.

[Featured Image by Bebeto Matthews/AP Images]