He passed away in 2015 with a sizeable estate. However, he did not leave any of it to his two daughters or five grandchildren.
Tompkins left everything he had to his second wife, who was not the mother of his children.
Tompkins and at least one of his daughters, Summer Tompkins Walker, did not get along or approve of their respective lifestyles as the San Francisco Chronicle reports in "Daughter seeks million from Esprit co-founder Douglas Tompkins' Will."
Tompkins Walker initially declared that there was nothing she could do about her father's decision to cut her out from his estate. However, she later filed a claim against the estate in Los Angeles.
She lost that claim quickly.
Tompkins Walker did not give up the fight and now claims that since her father established residency in Chile, that country's laws should apply to her father's estate.
She has now filed a case in Chile asking for the court to award her $50 million from the estate.
This case illustrates what happens when a child is completely cut out from a parent's estate. That child has little incentive not to fight the decision.
Tompkins Walker is not without means of her own. However, she apparently feels insulted by her father's estate plan and is motivated to fight it.
Reference: San Francisco Chronicle (Oct. 29, 2017) "Daughter seeks million from Esprit co-founder Douglas Tompkins' Will."