Aaron Hernandez‘s prison suicide has unraveled a mess of legal confusion.

As we reported, a Massachusetts judge granted the request to erase the former NFL star’s murder conviction that was still pending appeal, which means he technically died an innocent man.

Officials say the court had “no choice” but to honor the abatement doctrine on Tuesday — you know, innocent until proven guilty (or dead, apparently) — in the former athlete’s appeal for the 2013 murder of Odin Lloyd.

This new development blitzed the New England Patriots with a potential problem, as the team might now be on the hook to pay out the remainder of Aaron’s $6 million salary to his estate.

Related: Aaron’s Rumored Prison Lover Breaks His Silence

The former athlete’s attorney, Jose Baez, told TMZ his legal team is in talks with Hernandez’s former agents to see how the abatement will affect his contract.

Baez says Hernandez’s family is still grieving over his tragic suicide and are not rushing to take any specific action.

If the team were ordered to pay out the remaining sum, it would go to his beneficiary and fiance Shayanna Jenkins-Hernandez, who Aaron declared was “rich” in his suicide note to her.

Prosecutors have suggested that the ex-pro planned his suicide — which came days after he was acquitted in a separate 2012 double murder — in a ploy to exploit the abatement doctrine and make his family… well, rich.

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Baez, of course, doesn’t buy that theory, saying:

“I don’t give it any shred of credibility at this point.”

Stranger things have happened, that’s for sure!

Do U think the Patriots will have to pay up?

[Image via DJ Hernandez/Instagram.]

Read more: http://perezhilton.com/2017-05-09-aaron-hernandez-new-england-patriots-pay-out-contract-innocent-lawyers