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TRUST Law & wealth protection

Asset and estate planning can often be complex and emotional. As families and circumstances change, so does the need to regularly review and update structures and documentation. Our Trusts and Wealth Protection Team work alongside you to provide clear advice and practical solutions, tailor-made to your specific needs and outcomes.

Review And Restructure Of Trusts

 

As trusts are a long-term asset planning tool usually spanning many decades (and now up to 125 years), they require regular review from two key standpoints.

 

First, is whether the structure is still suited to your current circumstances. Considerations include whether:

  • You have the correct number of trusts and have assets allocated between them in the optimal way for asset protection;
  • The make-up of the trustees is appropriate (including the presence of an independent trustee);
  • Trust assets have been legally transferred to the current trustees (especially relevant where there has been one or more changes in trustees); and
  • The power of appointment of trustees is held by the appropriate person(s) and whether the mechanism for passing that power on the appointor’s death or incapacity has been provided for.

 

Secondly, there has been a significant change in the trust law landscape over the last decade, including the passage of the Trusts Act 2019 (“Act”). As a result, some older trust deeds can benefit from being updated to take these changes into account. Some common amendments include:

  • Addition of a provision limiting the sharing of financial information with beneficiaries;
  • Addition of a requirement for an independent trustee;
  • Amendments to how certain powers are exercised and by who, to strike an appropriate balance of control of the trust by the trustees as opposed to the settlors;
  • Updates to trustee delegation provisions, to ensure they are consistent with the limitations on delegations under the Act;
  • Expressly noting where the trust deed modifies or excludes default duties of trustees that would otherwise apply under the Act; and
  • Expressly excluding gross negligence from trustee liability and indemnity clauses, in line with the Act.

 

Tammy and the Trust Team are here to help you review and restructure your trust.

Contact us to discuss how we can help you.

Articles.

Time to Review Your Asset Structure.

Review of your asset structuring is something that needs to be done on a regular basis. It is not only your circumstances that might change, but there can be important changes in the law that may enable to you to more easily simplify your affairs, or it may be something that could render your existing documents out of date and not fit for purpose...

Trust Law Update: Recommended Law Changes – Inheritance and Wills.

There has been a huge amount of publicity regarding recommended changes to the law around inheritance and wills...

New Disclosure Requirements for Trusts.

In December 2020, the Government enacted a number of new disclosure requirements for domestic trusts which came into effect on 1 April 2022...

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