Sanders and Yates, ‘Letters of wishes and their ongoing importance in a trustee’s decision-making’

With the rise in judicial commentary on the significance of letters of wishes – in part led by beneficiaries disputing the construction, validity or weight that a trustee has given to them – their status as important relevant considerations for a trustee to take into account when engaging in a decision-making process has been established. However, the Courts are continuing to have to grapple with myriad circumstances and different scenarios in which expressions of wishes are made and fall to be considered. This article considers the importance of a settlor’s letters of wishes, a trustee’s duty to take a settlor’s wishes into consideration, the position where there are multiple letters of wishes, which letter of wishes applies where a trust to trust appointment is concerned and the approach the courts are likely to follow when considering letters of wishes.

Nigel Sanders and Charlotte Yates, Letters of wishes and their ongoing importance in a trustee’s decision-making, Trusts and Trustees, Published 6 May.

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