The Sixth Duty

The sixth duty listed by Augustine Birrell QC is the Trustee’s duty to account.

Augustine Birrell QC states:

“The sixth duty of a Trustee is to give the persons beneficially interested in the trust such information as to the state of the trust funds and otherwise as they may from time to time require, and to furnish such persons with accounts”

Augustine Birrell states that this is “of course rudimentary law” and then to drive home the point makes reference Walker v Symonds in the Swanston’s Reports where Lord Eldon states on page 58:

“It is the duty of Trustees to afford to their cestuis que trust accurate information of the disposition of the trust fund – all the information of which they are or ought to be in possession” And again on page 73: “He who, undertaking to give information, but gives but half information, in the doctrine of this court, conceals”.

Augustine Birrell continues:<.p>

“A Trustee must never withhold information.

Augustine Birrell makes reference to Low v Bouveirie, 1891, 3 Ch p99 where Lord Justice Lindley states:

“The duty of a Trustee is properly to preserve the trust fund, to pay the income of the corpus to those who are entitled to them respectively, and to give all his cestuis que trust on demand, information with respect to the mode in which the fund has been dealt with and where it is.”


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This tab updated on 3 June May 2015