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Trusts and Estates Law and Tax Journal: June 2011

Brabners LLP

Duncan Bailey talks through some current concerns of practice

On the whole, trust and estate practitioners are a fairly reserved bunch wishing to avoid changes that verge on the drastic or radical. With this in mind, I have both good and bad news for you.

After Ilot v Mitson testators should be careful when excluding children from their will, as Emma Carey explains

In what could be seen as a further attack on the principle of testamentary freedom, the recent Court of Appeal decision in Ilot v Mitson & ors [2011] raises the approach that should be adopted when an adult or able-bodied child seeks to claim against the estate of a deceased parent under The Inheritance (provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 (the 1975 Act). In the earlier case of Re Coventry [1984], the first Court of Appeal decision in relation to the ‘new’ 1975 Act, Oliver J at first instance said: 

Forsters LLP

Harriet Atkinson and Robert Laird Craig discuss a case that emphasises the high standards the courts expect from trustees towards beneficiaries

The recent case of Jeffery v Gretton and Russell [2011] examined the duty imposed on trustees by s4(2) Trustee Act 2000 to keep trust investments under review. Jeffery involved a will trust comprising a valuable but dilapidated property. The trustees decided to keep the property for almost six years while they undertook refurbishment works. They did not take professional advice on the merits of selling the property in its dilapidated condition and the repairs to the property significantly overran the trustees’ original time estimates. The court found that the trustees had breached their duty to review regularly the trust portfolio by their decision to keep the property and renovate it themselves. The court described the appropriate method for determining compensation for the beneficiaries but found the beneficiaries had not suffered any material loss so no damages were payable. 

Matthew Hansell provides pointers on the disclosure of tax avoidance schemes and IHT

In the 2004 Budget, it was announced that the government would introduce:

Farrer & Co

White v Williams shows the complications that can arise without specific charity law advice, as Paul Ridout relates

March saw the publication of the latest chapter in the High Court proceedings relating to the Tabernacle Church in Lewisham, known to its congregation as ‘the Tab’. Combined with Mr Justice Briggs’ previous ruling in 2010, this judgment provides a variety of useful insights into charity law, ranging from the question of the court’s jurisdiction under the cy-près doctrine in light of the new provisions in the Charities Act 2006, through the thorny question of a charity trustee’s right to be indemnified out of a charity’s assets, to the factors that the court will take into account when deciding whether to make a charging order.

Helen Ratcliffe examines Taube, which concerns the classification of corporate receipts and discovery principles

In October 2010, the First-tier Tribunal (Tax) reached a decision in the case of Bessie Taube Discretionary Settlement Trust trustees & ors v HMRCC [2011]. 

Catherine Paget looks at the Northall case, which sheds light on who inherits joint bank accounts

It is a common misconception among clients that the survivor of two joint bank account holders will automatically inherit the funds held in that joint account if they are a spouse, cohabitee or were in a family relationship with the deceased, notwithstanding that the funds in the joint account were contributed solely by the deceased.

Withers LLP

Katharine Landells reviews Jones, the latest case to show the court’s attitude to inherited assets on divorce

Since the sea change in family law following White v White [2000], it has been a matter of debate as to how inherited wealth should be dealt with on divorce in England and Wales. The Court of Appeal has attempted to grasp the nettle in two recent cases: Robson v Robson [2011] and Jones v Jones [2011]. This article will explain the differing conclusions of the Court of Appeal in those cases and attempt to explain the current law in this developing field.