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Alarm bells: Earl of Cardigan v Moore

The case of the Earl of Cardigan v Moore contains a stark warning for trustee-beneficiaries, say Malcolm Bishop QC and Seth Cumming

23 August 2012

In Brudenell-Bruce (Earl of Cardigan) v Moore Mr Justice Newey had to decide whether or not the trustees ?of a large family trust had the right ?to remove paintings from the home of ?a beneficiary of the trust, the Earl ?of Cardigan.

The most important legal point to arise out the case relates to the rule against self-dealing. In particular, it shows how a trustee can fall foul of the self-dealing rule even when they are themselves also significant beneficiaries of the trust and are advised to enter into the self-dealing transaction by their solicitor co-trustees.

Country estate

The facts of the case were as follows. The Savernake Forest estate near Marlborough is a great country estate. It has been owned by the family of the Earl of Cardigan for the best part of a thousand years.

Apart from Savernake Forest itself, Savern...

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