Reliance on Trust Instrument

A trustee who reasonably relies on the language of a trust is not liable for breach of trust if the breach resulted from the reliance. Section 456.10-1006, RSMo. A court may, for example, modify, reform, or construe the trust in a way that it deviates from the plain language of the trust. If this is a departure from the actual language of the trust, particularly in cases of reformation, a trustee may have a defense if he/she was administering the trust under the “old” language. In other words, if the trustee is observing the trust language, but after the fact the Court disagrees or changes the Trust instruments meaning, then the trustee is often immune from liability if there was reasonable reliance on the language in play.

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