The Korea Herald/Asia News Network
The portrait of late K-pop star Goo Hara is seen surrounded by flowers at a memorial altar at a hospital in Seoul on November 25, 2019. (AFP/Dong-A Ilbo)
Late Goo Hara’s brother Goo Ho-in is pushing forward his petition to legislate a “Goo Hara Law”, while also juggling a lawsuit against his mother over the singer’s inheritance.
During a recent interview with local publication Woman Chosun, he spoke candidly on his reasons for the legal battle, only three months after the singer passed away.
“I am wary of how my acts have been portrayed as mere defamation against our mother. I petitioned for the ‘Goo Hara Law’ hoping that others won’t find themselves in the same frustrating situation as I did, and that relevant discussions would take place,” he said.
Under the current legal system, if a child passes away suddenly, the child’s possessions including insurance money goes to parents even if they haven’t fulfilled their parental duties for long. The only exceptions are special circumstances such as murder or fabrication of the will.
The “Goo Hara Law”, petitioned by her brother to the National Assembly on March 18 with public support, aims to widen the scope of such special circumstances to include “negligence of one’s duties to protect or support their direct descendants”.
Even if it passes, it won’t be applicable to Hara’s case as a law against retroactive legislation.
Read also: Late Goo Hara left ‘despairing note’: Police
The brother had already filed a lawsuit against his mother earlier this month. She has claimed half of the deceased singer’s inheritance while the brother argues he cannot accept her share. Their father, who has the legal right to the other half, gave his share to the son.
“My father said he hadn’t done anything for Hara, and gave me his portion since I had grown up with her,” said the brother who remembered his dad as “someone who at least tried to take on some responsibilities as a parent”. But the father had to travel to other places for work and visited the siblings to give them occasional pocket money.
Their mother, on the other hand, was no different from a stranger he’d meet in the streets. It is unfortunate, he said, but the siblings had been raised by their grandmother since the mother left home when Hara was nine. Ten years later, when Hara sought out her mother, the siblings went to visit her together but they had nothing to say.
“Hara’s family was me, and my family was Hara. That was it,” he said.
Finally, he addressed concerns about how some people might not view the situation entirely favorably if Ho-in took all the inheritance. While he doesn’t know what the actual amount would be or have a concrete plan on the next steps, he hopes to establish a foundation under Hara’s name.
“Maybe the money can be used to help single-parent families, I don’t know. I just wish the name ‘Goo Hara’ will be remembered in a positive way for a very, very long time.”
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