The Cayman Islands Trusts Law is in urgent need of modernization, particularly with regard to the treatment of U.S. beneficiaries of a trust, trust lawyers said at the Mourant Ozannes Trusts and Private Client Conference.
Trusts and succession matters was the focus of the panel discussion, with U.K. and U.S. perspectives from Peter Steen of Mishcon de Reya and Megan Worrell of Duane Morris, respectively.
"While the U.K. has opted out of Brussels IV, it is still relevant for any client with both a U.K. connection and a European connection,” said Mishcon de Reya’s Steen, while Megan Worrell highlighted how the election of U.S. national law under Brussels IV adds complexity, because in the U.S. everything is very state specific. “I would need to look at which state my client had the most contact with and that is not always certain as there may be U.S. citizenship but no property, or property assets in multiple states,” she said. “Conflict of law issues may arise if New York, for example, doesn’t recognize Brussels IV. If the U.S. state concerned doesn’t have a clear-cut way of handling conflicts of law, then the estate could be pushed back to the EU, circumventing the clients’ choice.”
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