Module Identifier LA32920  
Academic Year 2003/2004  
Co-ordinator Ms Susan P Jenkins  
Semester Semester 2 (Taught over 2 semesters)  
Other staff Ms Catrin F Huws  
Pre-Requisite LA10110 or LA30110 or LA15710  
Co-Requisite LA36130  
Course delivery Lecture   40 Hours Two one hour lectures per week  
  Seminars / Tutorials   8 Hours Seminar. Four one hour seminars per semester  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam2 Hours  66%
Semester Assessment Essay: 2000 words (required in week 4 of Semester 2)  33%
Supplementary Assessment By retaking the failed element (ie written assignment or examination or both, as applicable)   
Professional Exemptions Required for Professional Purposes  

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:
To give students an understanding of the legal rules governing the establishment and management of Trusts, and the analytical skills to appreciate and evaluate complex property transactions and concepts. To develop logical skills, including the application of relevant information to solving complex legal problems, and to convey the skills necessary to analyse complex factual situations.

Brief description

Students need to study Equity and the Law of Trusts in order to gain exemption from the Law Society and Bar Part I examinations. Trusts are set up for many reasons, for instance joint ownership of the matrimonial home; to avoid the payment of tax; to provide for infants, the elderly or mentally disordered persons; or to protect people from their own excesses or what the settlor perceives to be their excesses. In these cases the trusts are set up deliberately and usually after considerable forethought and advice. In other cases, giving is spontaneous and here the law has to find a framework within which to administer the resulting fund. This occurs when appeals are made following disasters, such as the fire at the Bradford City football ground, when the Zeebrugge ferry sank, or following the oil spillage off the coast of the Shetland Islands. After the murder in Liverpool of the little boy, James Bulger, an appeal was made to help the family overcome the tragedy and for the benefit of the local community. People had been sending money for many days and lawyers had to find a way of handling it and of using it to specific ends. A trust was formed for this purpose. Some of these appeals acquire charitable status, but many do not. This module looks at the definition of charity and the many anomalies in the law. For instance, why are disaster funds often denied charitable status; why was a fund to promote the writing of Joanna Southcote, a woman who believed herself pregnant by the holy ghost, granted charitable status as being for the advancement of religion, but not a fund for the benefit of an enclosed order of Roman Catholic nuns? Why have trusts for some highly eccentric purposes been upheld when no living person could possibly benefit? The role of trusts in promoting public policy and the increasing importance of trusts in commercial law is also considered. The role and availability of equitable remedies will be considered also. Students taking Equity and Trusts should have already studied Land or should be taking that course at the same time. It builds on the skills acquired in land law, but also consolidates and extends them.


The module has three aims. The first aim is to provide students with a firm grounding in the principles and rules of Equity and Trusts. Next, students are to be furnished with sufficient knowledge to assess critically the place of Equity and Trusts in the financial and fiscal arrangements of private citizens and of commerce in general. The final aim is to assist those students wishing to gain exemption from the Law Society / Bar Part I examinations.


A. Equitable principles and remedies

development of equity and equitable remedies
reasons for the development of trusts
trusts as tax avoidance method
trusts as protective devices
trusts in commerce
B. Remedies and the importance of interlocutory procedures in practice

injunctions: interlocutory, final and Mareva
Anton Pillar orders
reservation of title and tracing
specific performance
damages in equity
account of profits
C. The Law of Trusts

1. Trusts for the benefit of persons

(a) Creation of a trust

requirement of certainty
Intention to create a trust
(b) Certainty of beneficiaries

Trusts and Powers
nature of the beneficial interest
(c) Certainty of property

2. Implied Trusts and Family Property

resulting, constructive trusts & proprietary estoppel
implied trusts & family property
remedial constructive trusts
fully secret and half secret trusts
3. Charitable Trusts

Definition of charity
concept of public interest
charities and politics
administration of charities
Charities Act 1994
cy-pres schemes and social need
disaster funds
4. Trusts for Non-charitable Purposes and for mixed purposes persons

5. Variation of Trusts

termination under Saunders v Vautier
variation of trusts
Variation of Trusts Act 1958
D. Trustees

Appointment, retirement and removal
powers and duties
conflict of interest
investment of trust property

Reading Lists

One from the following:
** Recommended Text
Hanbury & Martin Modern Equity 16th.
Pettit Equity & the Law of Trusts 8th.
Pearce & Stevens The Law of Trusts & Equitable Obligations 2nd.


This module is at CQFW Level 6