There are a range of legal issues that can arise from trusts. The law on trusts is not straight forward, and disputes often arise. Trusts can be created by a Will or by a trust deed, and often trustees find the position thrust upon them.
The Contentious Trusts and Probate team at Forbes have significant experience in a wide range of trust issues, from complex trusts with an offshore element, charitable trusts and SIPP/SSAS pension trusts to Will trusts.
Disputes can arise in a range of circumstances including:
- Feuding beneficiaries. You may be a beneficiary at loggerheads with other beneficiaries, or you may be a trustee faced with different demands from different beneficiaries
- Breach of trust. If a trustee has not acted in accordance with their duties, and have not acted in the best interests of the beneficiaries, then they may be in breach of trust
- Sham trusts. If a trust appears to create legal rights and obligations which are different from the actual legal rights and obligations which the parties intend to create, then the trust may be a sham and subject to challenge
- Issues relating to trust administration. If you suspect a trustee has not properly administered a trust, then there may be a breach of trust
- Claims by or against trusts. Claims some in a wide variety of forms, and if you are faced with a claim, then get in touch with our team for a free, no obligation consultation
- Beneficiaries' and third party entitlement to information. Beneficiaries and third parties are only entitled to certain information about a trust
- Trustee duties and obligations. Trustees have a list of fairly complex and sometimes onerous duties. These duties include acting in the best interests of the beneficiaries, acting impartially and duty to be ready with accounts
- Removal of trustees. If a trustee is in breach of trust or is unsuitable to act as trustee, then an application can be made for their removal
- Protecting trust assets. If you suspect trust assets are being misused or are being dissipated, then you need to act quick. We can advise you on action that can be taken including applying for an injunction
- Variation of trusts.
Time limits can vary in these claims, and time is often critical. This is particularly so if you suspect a trust's assets are being misused or dissipated. If you are a trustee, you are under an obligation to act in the best interests of the beneficiaries, and are obliged to protect the trust assets. It is therefore imperative that you seek advice at the earliest possible opportunity.
The team act for trustees, beneficiaries and third parties in relation to all manner of trust disputes. If you have any issues at all relating to a trust, call our Contentious Trusts and Probate team for a free, no obligation consultation, and we can tell you how we can help.