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Trusts: Bartlett Principle & Trustee’s Disclosure Duty

In the matter of the Alpha Beta and Delta Trust [2023] JRC 138 – The Royal Court considered the duty of a trustee under the Bartlett principle regarding the management of an underlying company.  The appointment of a board member by the trustee is one method of ensuring an adequate flow of information and influence but not the only method which one the particular facts a trustee might choose.  Obiter, when considering an application for disclosure by a beneficiary when the trustee has refused, the Court stated that the better view is that it is not simply reviewing the rationality of the trustee’s decision but rather exercising its own discretion as to whether the best interests of the beneficiaries would be served by disclosure.

Bridgeford A, WDJL, 21 -27 August 2023