Peter Falk

A judge's ruling leaves Columbo star Peter Falk's wife in complete control of his affairs and allows the ailing actor's daughter to visit him.

The ruling ends a legal battle with the 81-year-old actor's daughter, Catherine Falk. She submitted a petition in December to take over her father's affairs, despite a strained relationship with Falk and his wife of 30 years, Shera. Catherine Falk later withdrew the petition, noting that she is only concerned now with visiting her father.

The judge's ruling states that Catherine Falk will be allowed one 30-minute visit with her father per month. The visits will take place at the home of a friend who lives near the actor's home. Doctors testified that Falk will likely not remember the visits because of his condition.

Shera Falk was originally named as the actor's caregiver and keeper of his estate in 2005, according to the Associated Press. She will not be allowed to attend the visits between the actor and his daughter.

Falk, who won four Emmys for his work on Columbo, has advanced dementia, likely as a result of Alzheimer's disease, Falk's doctor testified Monday. Falk has lived with around-the-clock care in a guesthouse at his Beverly Hills home for several months.

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