We advise trustees (both professional and lay) and beneficiaries on a range of trust disputes, including:
- onshore trust disputes;
- offshore trust disputes including Channel Island (Jersey and Guernsey), Isle of Man, BVI, Gibraltar and Cayman Island trust disputes;
- actions to remove trustees;
- claims for an inventory and account;
- disputes between trustees;
- disputes between beneficiaries;
- claims by or against trusts;
- queries regarding trust assets; and
- variation of trusts.
What is a trust dispute?
A trust dispute is any dispute relating to the administration or validity of a trust. Whether you are involved in a dispute over the value of trust assets, the interpretation of a trust or trust dispute, a trustee dealing with feuding beneficiaries or need to know how to remove a trustee, we can help.
We aim to resolve trust disputes quickly and cost-effectively and have significant experience in dealing with all manner of onshore and offshore trust issues.
How quickly can your trust solicitors resolve a dispute?
Each case is unique and so how quickly your case might be resolved depends on the particular circumstances. However, with one of the largest trust disputes teams in the UK with over 50 years’ experience in trust disputes, and with recognised leaders in the field, we pride ourselves on being able to resolve your claim as quickly as possible.
Are there any time limits for a trust dispute?
Time limits vary depending on the specific type of trust dispute. Generally, if any time limits apply then they will tend to start from the date of any breach or knowledge of such breach and so, often, the key is to act quickly.
If you are a trustee you have a strict duty to ensure that you act in the best interests of the beneficiaries and that you do not put the trust assets at risk. As such, time is of the essence.
If you are facing a potential trust dispute then contact our team of trust dispute solicitors today for a free, no-obligation consultation.
Our size and experience means that we are able to act quickly.
How can I remove a trustee?
Take a look at our 'How to remove a trustee' blog.
What are the grounds for removing a trustee?
The grounds to remove a trustee can be many and varied. The following can give automatic grounds to remove a trustee:
- where they have remained outside of the UK for more than 12 months (in the case of onshore trusts or trusts governed by the law of England and Wales); or
- where, whether through some disability or otherwise, they are unable to act.
Otherwise, the grounds to remove a trustee may include the following:
- refusal to act;
- unfit to act, for example by favouring one beneficiary over another, having previously been convicted of fraud, having acted in breach of their duties or contrary to the terms of the trust, having profited from their role (see our blog on self-dealing for more information) or otherwise acted in
- a way which is contrary to the best interests of the trust and its beneficiaries;
- unanimous agreement between all relevant parties;
- where the trustee(s) and beneficiaries simply do not get on; or
- any other reason which calls into question the trustee’s suitability.
Our team of trust dispute solicitors have significant experience in removing trustees.
What information am I entitled to receive about a trust?
Beneficiaries are generally entitled to request and be provided with trust accounts or accounts showing their entitlement and interest. In many cases a beneficiary should also be provided with a copy of the trust deed.
How much information a beneficiary is entitled to will often depend upon their entitlement or “interest” in that trust.
If you have a trustee refusing to provide trust accounts or other information then it is possible to make an application for an inventory and account which requires the trustee to provide an itemised list of all assets in the trust as well as an account of their dealings with those assets and their actions.
Do you deal with offshore trust disputes?
Yes. Provided there is some link with England or Wales i.e. because the trustees, beneficiaries or trust assets are based here or the trust documents have elected England and Wales as the proper law then we can usually help.
We are one of the few contested wills teams in the UK with expertise in both onshore and offshore trust disputes.
I am a trustee faced with a potential claim. Can you help?
Yes. With over 50 years’ experience in advising professional and lay trustees we are well placed to help you navigate the minefield of a trust dispute.
More often than not, we can resolve potential claims without the need to go to court. However, if court proceedings or applications for directions are necessary then our primary focus is always to protect you, the client, from any adverse costs order and to provide you with frank, no-nonsense advice.