Termination of trusts—distribution and discharge
Termination of trusts—distribution and discharge

The following Private Client practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Termination of trusts—distribution and discharge
  • Winding up the trust
  • Trust accounts
  • Apportionment
  • Hotchpot
  • Division of trust assets
  • Distribution of assets—receipts and releases

Winding up the trust

Before winding up the trust, the trustees must have paid or provided for all outstanding liabilities and identified the beneficiaries who are entitled to the trust assets. Winding up the trust will involve:

  1. drawing up final trust accounts

  2. calculating the entitlement of each beneficiary

  3. transferring legal ownership of the trust assets to the beneficiaries

  4. obtaining an appropriate release or discharge

Trust accounts

Beneficiaries are entitled to be informed of the condition of trust property and trustees must be ready at all times to produce accounts. Generally, beneficiaries are supplied with copies, although strictly they are entitled to view the original accounts and to have any copies made at their own expense.

Trustees must also allow a beneficiary to inspect all documents connected to the trust (trust documents) but not those documents that would reveal reasons for the exercise of the trustees' discretion.

For more information, see Practice Note: Trust disputes—beneficiaries' rights to information.

Trustees neglecting or failing to provide information and accounts when requested are liable to the costs of proceedings to compel them to do so. If accounts are not produced, it is unlikely that the trustees will be able to obtain a formal release or discharge from the beneficiaries. In addition, the production of final accounts will enable the trustees to calculate the surplus assets available for distribution to the beneficiaries.

Indulgence has been shown

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