Trusts

News & Analysis as of

Supreme Court Hits Home Run for 401(K) Plan Beneficiaries

This week’s decision by the United States Supreme Court in Tibble v. Edison International, 2015 U.S. LEXIS 3171 (May 18, 2015), is expected to trigger an increase in lawsuits against 401(k) plan fiduciaries....more

Supreme Court Instructs Ninth Circuit to Consider Common Law of Trusts in Applying ERISA's Statute of Limitations

The Supreme Court has once again emphasized the importance of ERISA’s origins in the common law of trusts, this time in interpreting its statute of limitations. On May 18, the Court reversed the Ninth Circuit’s decision in...more

The Evolving Duty of Trustee Communication with Beneficiaries

Trustee communications with beneficiaries have followed an interesting legal path in Kentucky. The original Kentucky statute regarding communication with the beneficiaries required that the trustee must keep the beneficiaries...more

Trust Matters Update - May 2015

The Trust Matters Update is a periodical summary of cases, case comments, consultations, publications, legislative developments, legal updates, articles and news in the area of trust law and related issues. 1. Can...more

For the record: A review of the British Virgin Islands Trustee (Amendment) Act, 2015

On 30 March 2015 a new section (the New Section) relating to trustees’ obligations to maintain trust records was inserted into the British Virgin Islands’ (BVI) Trustee Ordinance. The provisions of the New Section are not...more

North Carolina Business Court Rules Tax on Trust Unconstitutional

The North Carolina Business Court held North Carolina’s taxation of a trust unconstitutional in Kaestner v. North Carolina Department of Revenue. N.C. Gen. Stat. § 105-160.2 imposes a tax on the undistributed income of a...more

Benefits of an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust as Security for Support

Divorce or separation agreements often require one spouse to maintain life insurance as security for their support obligation. Attorneys often do not address the tax implications if the insured spouse owns the policy. ...more

Payments to Investors in a Securitization Structure Protected from Avoidance

In what appears to be a matter of first impression, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Illinois recently held that payments made to investors in a two tiered securitization structure commonly employed in...more

A Trust May Be Subject to California Income Taxation if the Trustee Resides in California

California aggressively taxes non-grantor trusts. A non-grantor trust with a California resident trustee may be subject to California income taxation even if none of the assets of the trust are located in California, none of...more

A New Tax System for Managed Investment Trusts – Draft Legislation Released

On 9 April 2015, the Federal Government released exposure draft legislation to introduce a proposed new tax system for eligible managed investment trusts. The changes contained in the draft legislation largely follow...more

60 Crummey Withdrawal Beneficiaries Allowed

For many years, courts have recognized that gifts to a trust can qualify for the gift tax annual exclusion as “present interest” gifts if withdrawal powers are granted to beneficiaries.The IRS is hostile to persons being...more

Illinois Supreme Court Holds Accountant is Holder of Privilege, No Testamentary Exception

Late in the March term, the Illinois Supreme Court handed down its opinion in Brunton v. Kruger, an opinion with potentially significant implications for Illinois accountants. Brunton posed three related questions about the...more

Capacity at Issue? Consider Making a Video

When you’re preparing a will or trust for someone for whom capacity might later be raised as an issue, you have a potentially powerful tool that can help avoid later disputes: video. There’s nothing like a judge seeing a...more

Court Hears Arguments in Litigation Challenging the Constitutionality of North Carolina’s Taxation of Trusts

The Kimberly Rice Kaestner 1992 Trust (the “Trust”) originated from the Joseph Lee Rice, III Family 1992 Trust (the “JLR Trust”) created in 1992. The JLR Trust was created in New York when its initial trustee and settlor were...more

The 6 Biggest Estate Planning Mistakes

If you’re like most people, you have the best of intentions with regard to how you want your estate distributed when you die or your affairs handled should you become incapacitated. Unfortunately, without proper planning,...more

Family Law: Corporate and Trust Challenges to Service of Process and Jurisdiction (Updated)

The president of a corporation, manager of a limited liability company, trustee of a family trust, or principal of another business entity receives a summons in a Florida divorce case. One spouse contends the other’s control,...more

Debtor-trustees can run but they can’t hide behind the Fifth Amendment

Judgment debtors often try to use the Fifth Amendment’s privilege against self-incrimination to avoid post-judgment discovery of their assets and income. However, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri...more

In California We Trust: A Sensible Expansion Of The Voluntary Disclosure Program

Trusts administered outside California often are susceptible to not filing California income tax returns. This is because California has an atypical legal threshold for filing: trusts must file if a trustee or beneficiary...more

Still Waiting For Guidance on Material Participation

In March 2014, I commented on the US Tax Court decision in the Frank Aragona Trust case. In that case, the tax court disagreed with the Internal Revenue Service’s arguments that a trust was incapable of providing “personal...more

In the Uniform Code We Trust: Basic Provisions of Kentucky's Uniform Trust Code

Kentucky recently followed 27 other states in enacting the Uniform Trust Code ("UTC"), which went into effect on July 15th of last year. The sweeping provisions of the UTC will apply to all types of express trusts, even those...more

Best in Law: Head Off a Contest: Bolster Your No-Contest Clause

The inherent problem with safeguarding your wishes after death is that you are not here to defend them. To discourage litigation and protect your requests, most trusts contain a “no-contest” clause. The clause typically...more

The New Year is Here: Do You Have the Essential Estate Planning Documents in Place?

Essential Estate Planning Documents - Below is a list and brief overview of the documents most commonly identified as the “essential” estate planning documents. Please keep in mind that everyone’s situation is unique...more

Dead Man “Kwoking”: Estate Planning Property Transfers Can Trigger Title Insurance Nightmares

Estate planning attorneys regularly advise their clients about the tax and other advantages of transferring real property to irrevocable trusts or similar estate planning vehicles. But they may not consider the potentially...more

Protector Power To Amend Trust Upheld, But Litigants Also Raise An Interesting Accounting Issue [Florida] – Part Il

Earlier this week I wrote about a recent Florida case that upheld the ability of a trust “protector” to amend the provisions of a trust. In that posting, I alluded to an interesting trust accounting issue....more

Protector Power To Amend Trust Upheld, But Litigants Also Raise An Interesting Accounting Issue [Florida] – Part I

A recent Florida appellate court decision upholds the ability of a trust “protector” to amend the provisions of a trust. Florida Statutes Section 736.0808(e) provides that “[t]he terms of a trust may confer on a...more

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