Following Jay Ward's death, Anderson, who had not received public recognition for creating Dudley Do-Right, Bullwinkle and Rocky, learned the characters had been copyrighted in Ward's name alone. sued Ward's heirs to reclaim creator credit. In 1993 or 1996, (sources differ), Anderson received a settlement and a court order acknowledging him as "the creator of the first version of the characters of Rocky, Bullwinkle and Dudley." Ted Key, creator of the comic strip Hazel, had a similar situation with his characters Mr. Peabody and his pet boy Sherman.
Anderson died due to complications of Alzheimer's disease at the age of 90 on October 22, 2010, at a nursing home in Carmel, California. He was survived by his wife of 36 years, Patricia Larsen Anderson, his third spouse following divorces from first wife Gail and second wife Beverly. He had two children from his first marriage, sons Terry and Scott, and three stepchildren, Matthew Kennedy, Carolyn Kennedy, and Daniel Kennedy.