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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Law
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Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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My friend, aged 48 inherited £100,000 from his grandparents.

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My friend, aged 48 inherited £100,000 from his grandparents. It is in a trust (probably based in Isle of Man) with his mother as Trustee. She refuses to unlock the money to him. What can he do?
cmd2008 :

Does your friend have the information regarding the basis of the trust? Was it set up by will or by trust deed?


I now have a copy of the Will and give below relevant extracts. I must say, it looks watertight for his mother as Trustee. Is there any way he can contest this? His mother is likely to withhold the money for her lifetime - and she is under 70.


Trust was set up by grandmother’s will in March 2005. Grandmother died January 2014. “Perpetuity” is defined as 80 years

Relevant extracts from Will:

“IN THE EVENT of my said daughter [ ] and my grandson [ ] (being a son of my said daughter [ ] ) both surviving me then ……I BEQUEATH to my Trustee the sum of ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND POUNDS (£100,000) UPON TRUST TO INVEST such sum and to accumulate the income from time to time arising thereon (such sum income and accumulations and the portions thereof remaining from time to time being hereinafter called “the Number Two Trust Fund”) in her name until the date of death of my said daughter [ ] (hereinafter called “the Vesting Date”) AND I GIVE to my Trustee full power at her absolute discretion and without in any way being liable to account for the exercise of such discretion to pay or to raise and pay such sum or sums of money from out of the Number Two Trust Fund as she shall think fit to or for the benefit of my said grandson [ ] at such ages or times and with such trusts (including discretionary or protective trusts) for his benefit and generally in such manner as my Trustee shall determine but without infringing the rule against perpetuities with the power (such my Trustee so think fit) to exhaust the whole of the Number Two Trust Fund by such payments AND forthwith on the Vesting Date my Trustee SHALL PAY the Number Two Trust Fund to said grandson [ ] absolutely…..”


Do you have an answer to the question? It's been a while.


Can it be contested on basis of "unreasonable behaviour"?. His mother has said she will send him £5 per week, but only if he unblocks his phone. She will also consider allowing him to buy appliances such as washing machine, provided he proves his need for it and provides receipts. She has also suggested that she will be more forthcoming if he moves to the Isle of Man and lives in one of the houses she owns, rent free.


Correction: when I say trust was set up by grandmother's Will, I meant that her death activated the provision of her Will to set up a trust.

Thank you for your question.
This is a discretionary trust so he was not bequeathed any capital until his mother's death. Unfortunately, as you say yourself, this is pretty watertight and there is nothing he can do about it.
Sorry to have to advise in such terms.
Please leave a positive response so that I am credited for my time.
JGM, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 12092
Experience: 30 years as a practising solicitor.
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