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Full-Text Articles in Law

A New Cobell: The Need For A Continued Buy-Back Program, Liam C. Conrad Dec 2023

A New Cobell: The Need For A Continued Buy-Back Program, Liam C. Conrad

American Indian Law Journal

The General Allotment Act of 1887 divided Indian reservations into smaller plots for the supposed benefit of individual Indians. Today, these allotments are severely fractionated, with some 160-acre plots having as many as a thousand owners. Since allotment, Congress has repeatedly attempted to solve this problem. However, only the Cobell Land Buy-Back Program has made any sizeable impact on fractionation levels. This paper examines the fractionation problem and the Cobell Program. Now that the Cobell Program has ended in November 2022, this paper argues that Congress must quickly reauthorize a similar program or fractionation will soon exceed pre-Cobell levels.


Confusing Cy Près, Christopher J. Ryan Jr. Nov 2023

Confusing Cy Près, Christopher J. Ryan Jr.

Georgia Law Review

American courts have increasingly considered the possibility of prolonging the life of charitable trusts through cy près and the closely related doctrine of equitable deviation. This requires courts to interpret the material purposes of trusts and even the administrative terms on which settlors of charitable trusts condition gifts in trust made for public benefit. Yet, the implicit reasons why courts might invoke cy près to change a charitable trust’s material purpose have not been explored in significant depth heretofore—and neither has a common but vexing trend of courts conflating cy près with deviation, which negatively impacts charitable trust-making.

I analyze …


An Historical And Empirical Analysis Of The Cyprès Doctrine, Christopher J. Ryan Jun 2023

An Historical And Empirical Analysis Of The Cyprès Doctrine, Christopher J. Ryan

ACTEC Law Journal

Cy près is a pivotal doctrine in estate law and indeed American jurisprudence. It places courts in the shoes of settlors of charitable trusts to discern not only their original intent but also affords the possibility of continuing the material purpose for which settlors created enduring legacies of philanthropy benefitting society. For this reason, it may well be that no other legal doctrine is as closely tied to the interests of the individual and the collective as cy près. And my first-of-its kind study puts the cy-près doctrine front and center, while providing three major contributions to the field. First, …


Trust Alteration And The Dead Hand Paradox, Jeffrey N. Pennell, Reid Kress Weisbord Mar 2023

Trust Alteration And The Dead Hand Paradox, Jeffrey N. Pennell, Reid Kress Weisbord

ACTEC Law Journal

Trusts are popular instruments for wealth transmission because they can be crafted to suit almost any imaginable estate planning goal that is not contrary to public policy. With the abrogation of the Rule Against Perpetuities in most states, settlors may impose trust terms that will be legally enforceable for scores of future generations, if not in perpetuity. Long-term and perpetual trusts, however, present a paradox of dead hand control, because the specificity and the durability of settlor-imposed restrictions tend to be inversely related. As donative preferences become increasingly specific and restrictive, trusts become less durable with the passage of time, …


Against A Uniform Law On The Income Taxation Of Trusts, Michelle S. Simon Jan 2023

Against A Uniform Law On The Income Taxation Of Trusts, Michelle S. Simon

Elisabeth Haub School of Law Faculty Publications

In many areas, uniformity of state law is both practical and desirable. The Uniform Commercial Code, for example, brought harmony to conflicting state laws regarding the sale of goods and secured transactions, smoothing the way for interstate commerce. The law of trusts and estates is another area to which the Uniform Law Commissioners have recently turned their attention. Given the multitude of conflicts in state law regarding intestacy, fiduciary powers, and remote notarization, greater consistency between the states would be welcome. One area that should be off-limits to uniform lawmaking is the state income taxation of trusts. Despite complex and …


A Defense Of Perpetual Trusts, Danny Fein Jun 2022

A Defense Of Perpetual Trusts, Danny Fein

ACTEC Law Journal

This essay emphatically defends perpetual trusts and recent state-level repeals of the Rule Against Perpetuities. The scholarly debate over the category of perpetual trusts has focused exclusively on one type—the Dynasty Trust—which is designed to perpetuate wealth within families by exploiting a tax loophole. The unsavory nature of both Dynasty Trusts and the legal reform movement that spawned them has blinded critics to a universe of perpetual trusts that are socially beneficial. Previously, new types of trusts that required perpetuity could only achieve it through statutory exemption. Private Foundations and Stewardship Trusts were each granted perpetuity by legislatures. Now that …


The Progressives' Antitrust Toolbox, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2022

The Progressives' Antitrust Toolbox, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

All Faculty Scholarship

The period 1900 to 1930 was the Golden Age of antitrust theory, if not of enforcement. During that period courts and scholars developed nearly all of the tools that we use to this day to assess anticompetitive practices under the federal antitrust laws. In subsequent years antitrust policy veered to both the left and the right, but today seems to be returning to a position quite similar to the one that these Progressive adopted. Their principal contributions were (1) partial equilibrium analysis, which became the basis for concerns about economic concentration, the distinction between short- and long-run analysis, and later …


The Invention Of Antitrust, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2022

The Invention Of Antitrust, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

All Faculty Scholarship

The long Progressive Era, from 1900 to 1930, was the Golden Age of antitrust theory, if not of enforcement. During that period courts and Progressive scholars developed nearly all of the tools that we use to this day to assess anticompetitive practices under the federal antitrust laws. In a very real sense we can say that this group of people invented antitrust law. The principal contributions the Progressives made to antitrust policy were (1) partial equilibrium analysis, which became the basis for concerns about economic concentration, the distinction between short- and long-run analysis, and later provided the foundation for the …


Perpetual Dynasty Trusts: One Of The Most Powerful Tools In The Estate Planner's Arsenal, Brian Layman Aug 2021

Perpetual Dynasty Trusts: One Of The Most Powerful Tools In The Estate Planner's Arsenal, Brian Layman

Akron Law Review

One of the most effective tools to accomplish the goal of preserving family wealth is a perpetual dynasty trust. Such a trust permits discretionary distributions of income and principal for as many generations (in terms of years) as the state's law allows. Alaska, Arizona, Delaware, Idaho, Illinois, Maryland, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin have abolished, or provided trust settlors with the ability to opt out of their respective Rules Against Perpetuities. This means that a trust established in one of these jurisdictions could last forever. The essence of such a trust is that, if properly drafted and funded, to be …


Silent Trusts Are Trending: Will They Hold Trustees To Account?, Kent D. Schenkel Jun 2021

Silent Trusts Are Trending: Will They Hold Trustees To Account?, Kent D. Schenkel

ACTEC Law Journal

A common intuition is that easy money creates a disincentive to efforts for personal success. Many trust settlors seem to embrace this view but still wish to provide generously for their families. Enter the so-called “silent trust,” which seeks to moderate the disincentive effect by way of trust provisions that limit or waive notice and disclosure requirements to beneficiaries.

But a fundamental tension plagues these trusts. Beneficiaries need basic information about a trust in order to hold trustees to account. Consequently, traditional trust law provides limits on the degree to which trustees can be silent as respects a beneficiary’s right …


Inheritance Crimes, David Horton, Reid Kress Weisbord Jun 2021

Inheritance Crimes, David Horton, Reid Kress Weisbord

Washington Law Review

The civil justice system has long struggled to resolve disputes over end-of-life transfers. The two most common grounds for challenging the validity of a gift, will, or trust— mental incapacity and undue influence—are vague, hinge on the state of mind of a dead person, and allow factfinders to substitute their own norms and preferences for the donor’s intent. In addition, the slayer doctrine—which prohibits killers from inheriting from their victims—has generated decades of constitutional challenges.

But recently, these controversial rules have migrated into an area where the stakes are significantly higher: the criminal justice system. For example, states have criminalized …


The Uniform Probate Code's New Intestacy And Class Gift Provisions, Mary Louise Fellows, Thomas P. Gallanis Mar 2021

The Uniform Probate Code's New Intestacy And Class Gift Provisions, Mary Louise Fellows, Thomas P. Gallanis

ACTEC Law Journal

Law and society inextricably link family and wealth transmission. An individual’s right to inherit from an intestate decedent depends on whether the individual has a legally recognized familial relationship to the decedent. Similarly, when a class gift in a donative document uses a term of relationship to identify the class members, an individual’s right to share in the gift depends on the legal recognition of the relationship. The enactment of the 2017 Uniform Parentage Act required a revision of the intestacy and class gift provisions of the Uniform Probate Code.

We were the reporters, or principal drafters, of the UPC …


How To Sue An Asue? Closing The Racial Wealth Gap Through The Transplantation Of A Cultural Institution, Cyril A.L. Heron Feb 2021

How To Sue An Asue? Closing The Racial Wealth Gap Through The Transplantation Of A Cultural Institution, Cyril A.L. Heron

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

Asues, academically known as Rotating Savings and Credit Associations (or ROSCAs for short), are informal cultural institutions that are prominent in developing countries across the globe. Their utilization in those countries provide rural and ostracized communities with a means to save money and invest in the community simultaneously. Adoption of the asue into the United States could serve as the foundation by which to close the racial wealth gap. Notwithstanding the benefits, wholesale adoption of any asue model runs the risk of cultural rejection because the institution is foreign to the African American community.

Drawing upon principles of cultural and …


Who Gets The Pet In The Divorce? Examining A Standard For The New York Legislature To Adopt, Jared Sanders Jan 2021

Who Gets The Pet In The Divorce? Examining A Standard For The New York Legislature To Adopt, Jared Sanders

Touro Law Review

No abstract provided.


Trusts And Jurisdiction Clauses - Crociani Revisited: Ivanishvili, Bidzina And Others V Credit Suisse Trust Ltd [2020] Sgca 62, Kian Peng Soh Dec 2020

Trusts And Jurisdiction Clauses - Crociani Revisited: Ivanishvili, Bidzina And Others V Credit Suisse Trust Ltd [2020] Sgca 62, Kian Peng Soh

Research Collection Yong Pung How School Of Law

In the recent Singapore Court of Appeal decision of Ivanishvili, Bidzina and others v Credit Suisse Trust Ltd, the court analysed the effect of a forum administration clause in the trust context, holding that while the clause in question was a jurisdiction clause, it was not an exclusive jurisdiction clause governing the dispute between the trustees and beneficiaries.


Rethinking The Estate Planning Curriculum, Jeffrey A. Cooper Sep 2020

Rethinking The Estate Planning Curriculum, Jeffrey A. Cooper

ACTEC Law Journal

As a result of recent changes in Federal estate tax law, fewer and fewer clients need sophisticated estate tax planning. Many lawyers are thus spending less time acting as estate tax planners and instead deploying different skills and expertise.

In this brief article, I explore the extent to which law schools are rethinking their curricula as a result. The discussion proceeds in two parts. First, I discuss the curricular changes I have overseen at the law school at which I teach, setting out both the changes made and the assumptions underlying them. Second, relying on a brief survey of other …


Surveying The Not Yet Dead: Comment On Hirsch’S Empirical Analysis Of Revival Of Wills, Jonathan Klick Jun 2020

Surveying The Not Yet Dead: Comment On Hirsch’S Empirical Analysis Of Revival Of Wills, Jonathan Klick

All Faculty Scholarship

Hirsch advocates using an empirically grounded presumption when handling the revival of wills problem. The empirical baseline, according to him, should match what most people think (rightly or wrongly) a court would do when the revival problem arises. Hirsch then presents survey evidence on people’s expectations in this setting. Hirsch’s proposal is completely sensible in principle, and there is no reason it should be restricted to the revival problem. The argument applies throughout the field of wills, trusts, and estates and maybe even the law more generally. In practice, however, defining the relevant population to survey could pose a problem.


What Probate Courts Cite: Lessons From The New York County Surrogate’S Court 2017-2018, Bridget J. Crawford Jun 2020

What Probate Courts Cite: Lessons From The New York County Surrogate’S Court 2017-2018, Bridget J. Crawford

Elisabeth Haub School of Law Faculty Publications

By knowing what a judge cites, one may better understand what the judge believes is important, how the judge understands her work will be used, and how the judge conceives of the judicial role. Empirical scholars have devoted serious attention to the citation practices and patterns of the Supreme Court of the United States, the United States Courts of Appeals, and multiple state supreme courts. Remarkably little is known about what probate courts cite. This Article makes three principal claims — one empirical, one interpretative, and one normative. This Article demonstrates through data, derived from a study of all decrees …


In Re Raggio Family Trust, 136 Nev. Ad. Op. 21 (Apr. 9, 2020), Aariel Williams Apr 2020

In Re Raggio Family Trust, 136 Nev. Ad. Op. 21 (Apr. 9, 2020), Aariel Williams

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court determined that neither the language in the trust instrument nor NRS 163.4175 requires the trustee to consider the beneficiary’s other assets before making distributions from the trust.


Litigation Blues For Red-State Trusts: Judicial Construction Issues For Wills And Trusts, Lee-Ford Tritt Jan 2020

Litigation Blues For Red-State Trusts: Judicial Construction Issues For Wills And Trusts, Lee-Ford Tritt

UF Law Faculty Publications

Will construction—the process wherein a trier of fact must determine the testator’s probable intent because the testator’s actual intent is not clear—is too little discussed and too often misunderstood in succession law jurisprudence. Yet, construction issues are becoming increasingly important due to a growing number of will and trust disputes concerning the determination of beneficiaries in a post-Obergefell United States. Currently, courts are being asked to construe terms like “spouse,” “husband,” “wife,” “child,” “son,” “daughter,” and “descendants” in estate planning documents during a time in which understandings of marriage, identity, reproduction, religious liberty, and public policy are rapidly evolving. Interestingly, …


Estate Planning With Shaq And Strom: Teaching Post-Mortem Intimacy Audits, Adrienne D. Davis Jan 2020

Estate Planning With Shaq And Strom: Teaching Post-Mortem Intimacy Audits, Adrienne D. Davis

Scholarship@WashULaw

This Article highlights the importance of using both popular culture references and fictional show characters as mediums for teaching courses on Trusts and Estates. Utilizing post-mortem intimacy audits, specifically through pop culture pedagogical hypotheticals and case studies, Professor Davis highlights the importance of understanding doctrines within Trusts and Estates Law. Focusing on the examples of Shaquille O’Neal and Strom Thurmond, this Article highlights three important lessons for students: the fragility of estate planning, the effects of individual estate planning on groups’ broader wealth and political equality, and the role of private law in distributing legal rights and political equality.


Virginia Survey Of Law: Property Section; Trusts And Estates Section, Lynda L. Butler Sep 2019

Virginia Survey Of Law: Property Section; Trusts And Estates Section, Lynda L. Butler

Lynda L. Butler

No abstract provided.


Foreword: Twenty Years Of The Uniform Trust Code, Jeffrey A. Cooper Sep 2019

Foreword: Twenty Years Of The Uniform Trust Code, Jeffrey A. Cooper

ACTEC Law Journal

As we approach the 20th anniversary of the codification of the Uniform Trust Code (the "UTC"), it has been enacted in 35 jurisdictions and remains under consideration elsewhere. It has proven to be both popular and influential, generating spirited debates about issues ranging from ministerial to transformative. It has impacted numerous aspects of trust and estate practice, including estate planning, trust administration, and fiduciary litigation.

This is the foreword to a special issue of the ACTEC Law Journal to be produced to mark the occasion of the UTC’s 20th anniversary. In this very brief work, I provide a quick overview …


Intestate Succession In A Polygamous Society, Barry Cushman Aug 2019

Intestate Succession In A Polygamous Society, Barry Cushman

Barry Cushman

The pursuit of polygamous unions by members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in nineteenth-century Utah posed challenges for the law of the family unique in the annals of American legal history. The exotic familial relationships generated by plural marriages created novel and peculiar problems for the traditional law of intestacy. Mormon leaders, in an effort to avoid these problems, urged their polygamous brethren to make wills. Many polygamists, however, either neglected to plan their estates or were actively opposed to doing so. Mormon legislators accordingly sought to craft statutory schemes that would accommodate the peculiar inheritance …


Money That Costs Too Much: Regulating Financial Incentives, Kristen Underhill Jul 2019

Money That Costs Too Much: Regulating Financial Incentives, Kristen Underhill

Indiana Law Journal

Money may not corrupt. But should we worry if it corrodes? Legal scholars in a range of fields have expressed concern about “motivational crowding-out,” a process by which offering financial rewards for good behavior may undermine laudable social motivations, like professionalism or civic duty. Disquiet about the motivational impacts of incentives has now extended to health law, employment law, tax, torts, contracts, criminal law, property, and beyond. In some cases, the fear of crowding-out has inspired concrete opposition to innovative policies that marshal incentives to change individual behavior. But to date, our fears about crowding-out have been unfocused and amorphous; …


Janus As A Client: Ethical Obligations When Your Client Plays Two Roles In One Fiduciary Estate, Karen E. Boxx, Philip N. Jones Jun 2019

Janus As A Client: Ethical Obligations When Your Client Plays Two Roles In One Fiduciary Estate, Karen E. Boxx, Philip N. Jones

ACTEC Law Journal

Is it possible for an attorney to have a conflict of interest when the attorney represents a trustee who is also a beneficiary of the trust? Is that situation similar to having two clients? What if the trustee is not only a beneficiary, but also a claimant against the trust? Since the trustee has three roles to play, is that situation similar to an attorney having three clients? The issue presented by these potential conflicts was one of the most vexing for the drafters of the Fifth Edition of the ACTEC Commentaries. The range of possible approaches goes from a …


Strengthening The Passivity Default, Ian Ayres, Edward Fox Jun 2019

Strengthening The Passivity Default, Ian Ayres, Edward Fox

Articles

In The Prudence of Passivity, Bryon Harmon and Laura Fisher (hereafter HF) argue that "passive management become the default approach for the investment of trust funds, to be abandoned only when circumstances specifically dictate the use of active management."' In this comment we argue that their thesis could be strengthened (i) by more clearly distinguishing between default law and default investment practices, (ii) by more clearly articulating their favored altering rules.


Less Trust Means More Trusts, Bridget J. Crawford Apr 2019

Less Trust Means More Trusts, Bridget J. Crawford

Washington and Lee Law Review Online

The word “trust” has multiple meanings. In everyday speech, it refers to a feeling of confidence associated with integrity, such as trusting that a friend will keep a secret. In the financial context, some law students, lawyers and lucky individuals also understand that a trust is a near-magical device that splits legal and equitable title. A trustee holds formal legal title to property for the benefit of a beneficiary simply because the grantor declares it to be so. By turning the spotlight on “trust,” in both senses of the word, one can discern fault lines in contemporary U.S. political and …


Alpha Duties: The Search For Excess Returns And Appropriate Fiduciary Duties, Ian Ayres, Edward Fox Mar 2019

Alpha Duties: The Search For Excess Returns And Appropriate Fiduciary Duties, Ian Ayres, Edward Fox

Articles

Modern finance theory and investment practice have shifted toward “passive investing.” The current consensus is that most savers should invest in mutual funds or ETFs that are (i) well-diversified, (ii) low-cost, and (iii) expose their portfolios to age-appropriate stock market risk. The law governing trustees, investment advisers, broker–dealers, 401(k) plan managers, and other investment fiduciaries has evolved to push them gently toward this consensus. But these laws still provide broad scope for fiduciaries to recommend that clients invest instead in specific assets that they believe will produce “alpha” by outperforming the market. Seeking alpha comes at a cost, however, in …


Less Trust Means More Trusts, Bridget J. Crawford Jan 2019

Less Trust Means More Trusts, Bridget J. Crawford

Elisabeth Haub School of Law Faculty Publications

The word “trust” has multiple meanings. In everyday speech, it refers to a feeling of confidence associated with integrity, such as trusting that a friend will keep a secret. In the financial context, some law students, lawyers and lucky individuals also understand that a trust is a near-magical device that splits legal and equitable title. A trustee holds formal legal title to property for the benefit of a beneficiary simply because the grantor declares it to be so. By turning the spotlight on “trust,” in both senses of the word, one can discern fault lines in contemporary U.S. political and …