Tseng v. Tseng

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Trusts and Estates
  • Date Filed: 06-10-2015
  • Case #: A153639
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Lagesen, P.J. for the Court; Tookey, J.; & Edmonds, S.J.
  • Full Text Opinion

Under ORS 130.710(1), after a settlor’s death, a trustee of a revocable trust must provide information about the administration of the trust during the settlor’s lifetime to qualified beneficiaries of the trust such that those beneficiaries have the material facts necessary to protect their interests.

Settlor had a wife and children (Petitioners) in China, and, after emigrating to the U.S. and believing his family in China dead, remarried and had two more children (Respondents). After settlor discovered his family in China still lived, settlor created a revocable trust which included all of his children as beneficiaries and named Respondents as cotrustees. Petitioners learned that, just prior to settlor’s death, over one million dollars was removed from the trust, and sought information about the administration of the trust prior to settlor’s death. Respondents refused to provide information. Petitioners brought the claim to probate court, which denied relief absolutely. Petitioners appealed, and sought relief in the form of information as to whether the settlor had authorized the transfer of funds out of the trust. On appeal, the Court reviewed the legislative history of ORS 130.710(1) and the Oregon Uniform Trust Code to analyze this issue of first impression. The Court determined that, while during the settlor’s lifetime, beneficiaries have absolutely no right to information about the administration of a revocable trust, after the settlor’s death, qualified beneficiaries are entitled to information about the administration of the trust during the settlor’s lifetime if that information is reasonably necessary to protect their interests. Reversed and remanded.

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