What happens if the Deed is lost?

This is not an easy process as you simply cannot just replace a lost discretionary trust deed.  To avoid the risk of resettlement and the hefty tax consequences that can follow, the first port of call is to try to locate a copy of the original deed. Trustees should consider checking with:

  • All previous professional advisers (i.e., accountants, lawyers) who may have either assisted in establishing the trust or otherwise provided advice at some point;
  • Checking with all financial institutions that the trust may have had dealings with over time;
  • Titles Office and whether they have a copy;
  • Checking the statutory registers of related entities (e.g., often a copy of the Trust Deed is placed in the company register for any corporate trustee). 

If the above does not provide any luck, specialist legal advice is then required to determine the most appropriate course of action.

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