Monday, November 11, 2013

In re Lawrence case brief

In re Lawrence case brief summary
279 F.3d 1294 (2002)


CASE SYNOPSIS
Appellant settlor challenged the judgment of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida which affirmed the bankruptcy court's order that adjudged the settlor in contempt and ordered his imprisonment until the contempt was purged.

CASE FACTS

The settlor settled an offshore trust. An arbitration judgment was issued against the settlor. The trust was amended so that the settlor's powers would terminate in the event of his bankruptcy. Another amendment was added that proscribed the settlor's ever becoming a beneficiary of the trust. The settlor filed a voluntary petition in bankruptcy. The bankruptcy trustee sought an order directing the settlor to turn over the assets of the trust. The order was granted. The court held the settlor in contempt when he failed to turn over the trust assets.

DISCUSSION


  • The bankruptcy court ordered the settlor's incarceration pending compliance. 
  • The district court affirmed both the turn over order and the contempt orders. 
  • The settlor appealed. 
  • The appellate court found that the bankruptcy court properly took notice of and considered the evidence placed into the record in the underlying bankruptcy litigation. 
  • The district court did not err when it found that the settlor had the requisite ability to control the distribution of the trust. 
  • The district court did not err when it held that the settlor failed to establish his defense of impossibility.

CONCLUSION

The judgment of the district court was affirmed.

Suggested Study Aids For Wills, Trusts & Estate Law

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