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  3. International Trust Law

International Trust Law (LAWS90096)

Graduate courseworkPoints: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2019
Subject levelGraduate coursework
Subject codeLAWS90096
Availability(Quotas apply)
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

This subject is a study of trusts in an international context, beginning with the rise of the modern form of discretionary trust and the problems of holding trustees to account and controlling the exercise of their discretion. It explores how trusts are used in the 'offshore world', which allows for private purpose trusts and makes use of enforcers, protectors, and letters of wishes. It looks at how trusts are used, and misused, to protect assets from creditors, and how they are used in civil law jurisdictions.

It is suitable for those with common law or civil law backgrounds, whether they have studied trusts at an undergraduate level or not. Suggestions for some extra introductory reading will be provided for those who are new to trusts or wish to brush-up on basic trust concepts.

Principal topics include:

  • Control of trustees
  • Purpose trusts
  • Enforcers and protectors
  • Letters of wishes
  • Shams
  • Asset protection
  • Trusts in private international law
  • Trusts in civil law jurisdictions.

Intended learning outcomes

A student who has successfully completed this subject will understand, appreciate, and be able to explain the significance of:

  • The use of trusts and trust-like devices in common law, civil law, and 'offshore' jurisdictions to manage wealth, and the various purposes for which they are used
  • The difficulties associated with the modern form of discretionary trust and the control of trustees and the exercise of their discretion
  • Developments in the 'offshore world', their legitimacy, and their effect on the development of the law of trusts elsewhere.

Last updated: 20 July 2019