The trustees of a trust set up by the 1997 Will of Jean Montgomery have succeeded in the latest round of litigation against one of the beneficiaries regarding possession of a Surrey pub that is the trust’s main asset.
Mrs Montgomery left the Albert Arms in trust to be shared equally among her three children. Two of her children want to sell it, but her son Jonathan has been living in the property for over three years without paying rent and is refusing to leave.
Chief Master Marsh heard the latest case earlier this year and handed down judgment recently. He made a Beddoe Order authorising the trustees to go ahead with enforcement action to obtain possession of the property against any persons in occupation (including the son) and to sell the property. The trustees are also entitled to an indemnity for their costs from the trust.
The High Court decided an order was required because Jonathan had threatened to bring a claim against the trustees for breach of trust if they went ahead with the possession and sale of the property.
A Beddoe Order is made by the court giving directions to a trustee or personal representative to bring or defend legal proceedings that affect the estate or trust fund, at the expense of the estate or trust fund. Such an order is useful in cases, such as this one involving a risk other parties will allege steps taken by Trustees are inappropriate.
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