Recent Cases of Interest to Fiduciaries: May 2023

May 9, 2023

In the most recent installment of the McGuireWoods Fiduciary Advisory Services annual multipart series on recent fiduciary cases, developments in the law concerning various topics are examined through the following:

Matter of Phyllis V. McDill Revocable Tr., 506 P.3d 753 (Wyo. 2022).
The Wyoming Supreme Court upheld the application of a trust’s no-contest clause when a beneficiary challenged the terms of the trust in a different jurisdiction.

Jemison v. Jemison, No. 21-1805, 2022 WL 2383611 (3d Cir. July 1, 2022).
The 3rd Circuit upheld the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey’s application of the business judgment rule to insulate certain members of a company’s board of directors for challenges to decisions relating to certain director’s compensation and commissions and to certain sales by the company.

In re Trust of Harrison, 272 A.3d 45 (Pa. Super. Ct. 2022).
The Superior Court of Pennsylvania affirmed the lower court’s ruling that the trustee acted outside his discretion because he failed to show that ADHD and marijuana use caused the beneficiary to be unable to manage his affairs.

Lizer v. Romano, No. B306558, 2022 WL 1681653, at *1 (Cal. Ct. App. May 26, 2022).
The Court of Appeals of California reversed an order that unlawfully modified the terms of an irrevocable trust.

In re Logan Benjamin Garner Special Needs Tr., 2022 WL 1434355 (Mich. Ct. App. May 5, 2022) (unpublished).
The Court of Appeals of Michigan affirmed the probate court’s removal of KeyBank as trustee because its attorney and fiduciary fees were generally reasonable but not reasonable for the specific trust under management.

Little v. Davis, 974 N.W.2d 70 (Iowa 2022).
The Supreme Court of Iowa concluded that a statute permitting termination or modification of an irrevocable trust with the consent of the settlor and all beneficiaries requires the consent of all settlors of a trust, not only the surviving settlor.

In re Trust B Under Agreement of Richard H. Wells, 2022 Pa. Super. LEXIS 337 (2022).
The Pennsylvania Superior Court held that the payment of reasonable trustee commissions did not constitute a sufficient basis for termination of a trust.

Brock v. Brock, 2022 WL 3223171 (Tenn. Ct. App. Aug. 10, 2022), appeal denied (Dec. 19, 2022).
The Tennessee Court of Appeals held that trust terms limiting the trustees’ duty to provide information only to current income beneficiaries overrides the Tennessee Trust Code provisions requiring disclosure of information to any qualified beneficiary.

Fox v. Fox, 283 N.C. App. 336, 873 S.E.2d 653 (N.C. Ct. App. 2022).
A claim challenging the validity of a revocable trust must be brought within three years of the settlor’s death.

Download Report