Miyoko Watei is Bobby Fischer's legal heir

by ChessBase
3/4/2011 – The late chess champion has not been able to rest in peace. After his death in 2008 a Filipina live-in partner claimed that her young daughter had been fathered by the American, and then two nephews of Fischer challenged his marriage to Japanese Chess Association president Miyoko Watai. Now the Reykjavík District Court has determined: Miyoko was his wife and is his only legal heir. Press report.

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Miyoko Watai Ruled Bobby Fischer’s Legal Heir

Reykjavík District Court determined yesterday that Miyoko Watai, late chess grandmaster Robert J. Fischer’s wife, is his legal heir. Fischer’s nephews, Alexander Gary and Nicholas William Targ, had doubted that Watai and Fischer were legally married and claimed to be his closest relatives. Fischer’s nephews are to pay the widow over ISK 6.6 million (USD 57,000, EUR 41,000) in legal costs, Morgunbladid reports. [Gudjon Olafur Jonsson, a lawyer for Fischer's nephews, Alexander and Nicholas Targ, said it was very likely that they would appeal to Iceland's Supreme Court, but sources in Iceland tell us that the appeal is without merit or chance].

After Fischer’s death in 2008, Watai demanded that she be recognized as his legal heir. The case has been circulating through the Icelandic courts since then and has been taken to the Supreme Court more than once. Fischer became an Icelandic citizen a few years before his death. He died in Iceland and is buried in a cemetery in the southern part of the country.

In addition to his widow and nephews, a woman who claimed her daughter was Fischer’s legal heir was also involved in the legal battle until Fischer’s body was exhumed and a DNA analysis confirmed that Fischer wasn’t her daughter’s biological father.

Reykjavík District Court’s verdict has concluded that the document submitted by Watai confirmed that she and Fischer were legally married on September 6, 2004. She is said to have submitted sufficient proof to that account at the time of his death and is therefore his legal heir. Watai is a pharmacist and the chairperson of the Japanese Chess Association. She said she and Fischer met in Japan in 1973.

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