Goodrich & ors v AB & ors [2022] WTLR 525

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | Summer 2022 #187

W was the founder of WBL, an internationally renowned publisher of children’s books. In 1989 W instructed solicitors to create an employee trust (WBET) for WBL and transferred 51% of the WBL shares into WBET. The remainder of the shares were divided amongst family trusts established by W.

W died in 1991 and the shares in WBL held by the family trusts were distributed to employees and officers of WBL through a qualifying employee share ownership trust and a share incentive plan. Some of those shares were acquired from employees by the WBL Employee Share Ownership Plan (ESOP).


Partington v Rossiter [2022] WTLR 257

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | Spring 2022 #186

The deceased was domiciled in Russia and entitled to assets in Jersey. He made a will in the UK in 2013. He had initially prepared a draft himself, which defined his estate as his property, money and investments in the UK, and made specific legacies to his children in respect of his Jersey assets. The deceased’s solicitor advised him that the will did not need to refer to specific assets and it was redrafted. Clause 1 of the executed will stated ‘I confirm that this will only has effect in relation to my UK assets’. It divided the residuary estate equally between his children. The deceas...

Will construction: Context is key

Interpreting wills is not a question of dictionary definitions. Elis Gomer examines a case that underscores this principle It is unhelpful to stick too dogmatically to the ‘dictionary’ meaning of a word or term when there is a likelihood that it is being used – for whatever reason – in an unconventional way. The recent …
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Validity of statutory notices: ‘Reasonable recipient test’ trumps the strict approach

The recent Court of Appeal case of Pease v Carter will be welcomed by landlords. Karl Anders and Deborah Brown examine the judgment ‘The decision will be welcomed by landlords as it provides some scope for persuading a court to find that a notice containing an error may nevertheless be relied upon to found possession …
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Guarantees: Demanding practices

Andy McGregor and Sarah Shaul outline a recent case on guarantees!–more–> ‘The guarantee contained both an unconditional guarantee clause and a separate principal debtor clause; the latter rendered Mr Cohen liable to Barclays for any customer liabilities that could not be recovered from him as guarantor.’ In Barclays Bank plc v Price [2018], Mr Cohen …
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Notification clauses: Warranty and peace

Gwendoline Davies explains why notifying contractual warranty claims can be a particularly tricky business ‘The purchaser‘s letters did not constitute valid notification of a claim because, without identification of the specific warranties alleged to have been breached, they did not set out the legal grounds for a claim.‘ In recent years, the UK courts have …
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Contract: Take no notice

Sapna Garg investigates a recent judgment with implications for business and share sale agreements ‘In cases of similarly worded clauses, a claims notification is unlikely to be valid if it sets out the circumstances giving rise to the claims and provides only a general indication of the various clauses which may have been breached.‘ The …
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Construction: Brick by brick

Claire King analyses recent judicial trends in the contractual interpretation of construction contracts ‘What has sometimes been used as a “get out of jail card” (ie arguing business common sense to escape an otherwise harsh result) is going to be an increasingly hard card to use in the future.’ The key to resolving disputes is …
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Brennan v Prior [2015] EWHC 3082 (Ch)

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | March 2016 #157

The claimant and third to sixth defendants were beneficiaries under a will. The first and second defendants were the witnesses and executors of the will. The claimant unsuccessfully challenged the will with costs orders being made against the claimant in favour of the first and second defendants and the third to sixth defendants. As regards the third to sixth defendants’ costs the order provided that the costs (if not previously paid) should be payable out of what remained of the claimant’s pecuniary legacy after payment of the first and second defendants’ costs prior to the distribution...

Guthrie v Morel & ors [2015] EWHC 3172 (Ch)

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | March 2016 #157

The claimant sought by way of summary judgment a declaration as to the true construction of a will or alternatively an order for rectification of the will pursuant to s20(1) of the Administration of Justice Act 1982.

The deceased died on 20 July 2011. His will took the form of a letter addressed to a solicitor. Both parties accepted that the document was a will and had been admitted to probate. One of the executors obtained a grant of probate on 23 August 2012.

The will contained a bequest in the following terms: ‘My property 87 Loma Del Rey, Alcadesa, Spa...