News & Analysis as of

Trustees

Court Declines To Quash Subpoena Issued To South Carolina Department Of Insurance In Companion Property Case

by Carlton Fields on

We previously reported on this case on January 5, 2016, June 28, 2016, July 20, 2016, and December 14, 2016. The case concerns Companion Property and Casualty Insurance Company’s participation in a fronted insurance program...more

Transferring Property To A Trust: It’s Not What You Meant, It’s What You Said

by Bryan Cave on

When we put pen to paper, sometimes the words don’t come out right. If that happens, hopefully there’s an opportunity to explain what we meant. For example, we have seen how scrivenor’s errors can be explained. But, for the...more

On Its Own Motion

by Farrell Fritz, P.C. on

While most decisions rendered by the Surrogate’s Court result from an affirmative request for relief, occasionally the court will address an issue on its own motion when justice or the exercise of its inherent or statutory...more

Ohio Court of Appeals Affirms Statutory Protections for Trustees

by Reminger Co., LPA on

Ten years after the first enactment of the Ohio Trust Code, in Zook, et al. v. JP Morgan Chase Bank National Association, et al., 10th Dist. No. 15AP-751, 2017-Ohio-838, the Tenth District Ohio Court of Appeals gave insight...more

Should a Parent Serve as Trustee of a Special Needs Trust?

It is common for a parent to want to be named as trustee of a special needs trust benefitting her child, especially when the parent is the one creating or funding the trust. There are many reasons why this makes sense. It...more

In Brief: Court Rules Against Lyondell Litigation Trustee on LBO Fraudulent Conveyance Claims

by Jones Day on

In Weisfelner v. Blavatnik (In re Lyondell Chemical Company), 2017 BL 131876 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Apr. 21, 2017), the bankruptcy court presiding over the chapter 11 case of Lyondell Chemical Company ("Lyondell") handed down a...more

Substantive Consolidation of Non-Debtors-Standing and Notice Issues

by Dechert LLP on

U.S. courts generally agree that the substantive consolidation should be applied sparingly, and even more so when substantive consolidation of debtors with non-debtors is sought. While many opinions address the grounds for...more

Kiwi Defense Doesn't Get Off the Ground in Preference Litigation Involving Related, but Severable, Contracts

by Jones Day on

Among the required elements of a claim to avoid a preferential transfer under section 547(b) of the Bankruptcy Code is that, if the creditor-transferee were permitted to retain a pre-bankruptcy payment, it would end up being...more

Case Law Precedent for an Award of Attorney Fees in Excess of Compensatory Damages for a Trustee’s Failure to Account

by Reminger Co., LPA on

Following up on the recent blog post on basic principles of trust reporting, the Fifth District Court of Appeals released a timely analysis involving a trustee’s failure to account and an award of attorney fees against the...more

Pet Trusts

by McNair Law Firm, P.A. on

Most people remember the late Leona Helmsley as the convicted tax felon famous for uttering the words “only little people pay taxes”, but she is also remembered for having a will that left a $12 million trust fund for her...more

The Duty of Impartiality and Other Trustee Troubles

by Moskowitz LLP on

Trustees are accountable to both the current income beneficiaries and the remaindermen of a trust, and are often placed in the unenviable position of have to balance the interests of the two. A beneficiary may look forward to...more

Section 1111(b) Election Not Available When Collateral Is Sold Post Petition

by Dechert LLP on

The facts in Salamon are straightforward. Salamon (“Buyer”) purchased real property from Behrend (“Seller”) that was already subject to two liens (the “Preexisting Debt”). Instead of paying cash at closing, the Buyer executed...more

Guidelines for Making Prudent Investment Decisions

by Moskowitz LLP on

When the creator of a trust is living, they can manage their trust and invest it however they wish. When a named trustee assumes control of a trust, however, they have a number of investment obligations and duties. A...more

Role of the Trustee

by Moskowitz LLP on

When Edna Sue Pate was appointed trustee of her 10 year-old grandson’s $100,000 college fund in 2003, it is unlikely that her relatives knew about her gambling addiction. Or perhaps they thought that her grandmotherly...more

Constructive Trusts Can Catch Wayward Trust Assets

by Downey Brand LLP on

Trustees in California trust disputes should not overlook the power of the constructive trust remedy as a way to recover errant trust assets. That’s a takeaway from Higgins v. Higgins (2017) __ Cal.App.5th __, an opinion in a...more

Florida’s Fiduciary Lawyer-Client Privilege is on the Books, But is it Good Law?

In 2011, Florida’s legislature enacted section 90.5021, Fla. Stat., which provides for application of the lawyer-client privilege – even when the client is a fiduciary....more

Recent Cases of Interest to Fiduciaries

by McGuireWoods LLP on

Kroll v. New York State Dept. of Health, 39 N.Y.S.3d 183 (Oct. 5, 2016); see also In re Kroll, 971 N.Y.S.2d 863, 865 (Sur. Ct. 2013) - Court approves “decanting” of a trust to effectively remove a beneficiary’s future...more

Can I Leave My Family Business to a Minor Child?

Let’s say you have a thriving family business that you have built through your own hard efforts during your lifetime. You are raising your minor child to see the value of the business and to be entrepreneurial, and you want...more

Does an Exculpatory Clause Protect Trustees Against Claims of Breach of Fiduciary Duty?

The starting point for evaluating whether trustees have breached a fiduciary duty is the settlor's intent as provided in a trust instrument, and many trusts contain clauses known as "exculpatory" clauses. These clauses often...more

Debt Dialogue: April 2017 - Minnesota Appeals Court Addresses Accounting for Trustee’s Fees and Expenses

In a short decision, In re that Certain Indenture Date as of April 1, 2010 (MN Ct. App. April 3, 2017), the Court of Appeals of Minnesota recently addressed a challenge to the award of trustee fees and legal expenses brought...more

Federal Court Upholds Attorney-Client Privilege for Mutual Fund Independent Trustees

by Ropes & Gray LLP on

In a decision affirming the importance of the attorney-client privilege in the mutual fund board setting, an Illinois federal court ruled on April 25, 2017 that fund shareholders were not entitled to access privileged...more

Sometimes It Takes 2.5 Years To Reach Summary Judgment

by Fox Rothschild LLP on

On September 3, 2014, Brent Williams, the Plan Trustee (“Trustee”) for Touch America Holdings, Inc., filed a complaint initiating an adversary proceeding against, among others, AT&T Corp. (AT&T”). In a 36 page decision dated...more

Trustee Removal Lawsuits: An Overview

by LeClairRyan on

How can a person remove a trustee of a trust? Depending on the language of the trust, there could be several ways. This blog post summarizes some of the options, and provides an overview of things to consider when a person...more

California Courts Must Examine Outgoing Trustee’s Assertion of Attorney-Client Privilege

by Downey Brand LLP on

One challenge that California trustees face is the prospect that confidential attorney-client communications will pass to successor trustees if they resign or are removed from office. The attorney-client privilege belongs to...more

Walrath Opinion on Avoidance Actions – Motion for Summary Judgment: Denied

by Fox Rothschild LLP on

In a 24 page decision released April 13, 2017, Judge Walrath of the Delaware Bankruptcy Court denied a motion for summary judgment in a preference action brought by Charles Stanziale as the chapter 7 Trustee of Powerwave...more

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