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Equity and Trusts – trust concept (English law)

July 31, 2016 0 Comment

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(English law) Equity and Trusts Law – the trust concept.


The following is a problem question where the law is applied with case law and statutes mostly. It requires critical analysis and thought so the relevant accuracy of the law is applied in the area of trust law of constitution, 3 certainties, formalities, Wills and gifts.


The parties are seeking advice in relation to their entitlement. Please address the problem question accurately as it is a complex area in English law.


Please quote the authority briefly within the answer to highlight and the footnotes where possible.


The referencing style is OSCOLA (Oxford) with footnotes with up to 45 references.





1) Sarah died recently and by her will, she appointed her son Tom as her sole executor. Tom tells you that when Sarah had been packing to go on holiday to France last year she had become worried about flying. She handed Tom her car keys and the title deeds to her house ‘Lavender Dream’, saying “If anything happens to me you can keep these.” Sarah then wrote a note which stated “I do hereby give my house Lavender Dream to my son Tom”. She stapled the note onto the deeds of Lavender Dream.


2) When Sarah came back from her holiday two weeks later, she did not speak to Tom again about either the car or Lavender Dream. Since then she continued to use the car with her spare car keys and on several occasions she lent it to her niece Rose.


3) Amber tells you that last year Sarah had stated that she would leave The Grove Plot to Amber in her will. This is because Sarah was so thankful about some money that Amber had given Sarah some money a few years earlier to help her over some financial problems. Sarah then paid for a cottage to be built on The Grove Plot for Amber. In return, Amber was so grateful that she started to spend more time with Sarah taking her out and about, doing Sarah’s heavy chores and shopping for her.


4) The night before she died, Sarah had felt very unwell and telephoned Rose. In response, Rose visited and helped to put her Aunt to bed, sitting with her with her as she rested. Sarah asked Rose to open the top drawer of her dressing table and told her that she could have all the things in the drawer. Inside, Rose found an emerald ring and some share certificates.


The following clauses are also contained in Sarah’s will.


  1. £20,000 to my niece Kerry so that she can use part of it herself and hold the remaining part on trust for all her cousins.


  1. £3,000 to my old pal James secure in the knowledge that he will distribute half amongst our old friends in the Watergate Park Tennis club where we both used to play. James knows them all.


  1. a) Identify the issues of law arising in the above problem.


  1. b) Consider the possible entitlements (if any) of Tom and Amber and Rose, Kerry and James. (Answer both parts of this question)
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