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17 - Trusts in Civil Law Environments

Can Civil Law Jurisdictions Such as Liechtenstein Deal with Core Issues of Trust Law?

from Part III

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  19 April 2018

Richard C. Nolan
Affiliation:
University of York
Kelvin F. K. Low
Affiliation:
City University of Hong Kong
Tang Hang Wu
Affiliation:
Singapore Management University
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Summary

Trusts play an essential role as vehicles in the field of corporate structuring, family offices, wealth preservation and estate planning. In civil law jurisdictions, such as Liechtenstein, that have implemented the English law of trusts the phenomenon of 'clash of legal cultures' is always visible. Outside the common-law world, fiduciary relationships fall within the categories of fiducia, fiducie or treuhand and are based on a simple obligation. On the contrary, trusts built on equity have a very long tradition in common-law jurisdictions. Trusts can only work in civil law jurisdictions if national courts follow the developments in English case law. Liechtenstein as the oldest example for a legal transplant of trusts into a civil law environment offers a wide range of case law as well as statutory provisions. Within this field of trusts the present paper focuses on the Liechtenstein legal system and tries to give answers to various issues such as the trustees' specific duties and liabilities in cases of breach of trust. Furthermore the paper will focus on specific beneficiaries' rights, such as the rights to receive appropriate information and to be rendered the accounts.
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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2018

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