Private Wealth

Trust Disputes

Specialised legal advice for wills, trust and estate disputes

Dispute resolution for wills, trusts and estates is a key area of Hesketh Henry’s Private Wealth practice. 

You can consult our Private Wealth team about disputes between trustees and beneficiaries, amending trust deeds, resettling a new trust on an old trust, and related matters associated with updating old trusts to suit modern conditions.

If you need legal assistance related to an estate dispute, Hesketh Henry can help with expert advice that aims to resolve situations effectively with minimal stress and expense. Our Private Wealth team can assist with contesting or challenging a will, a situation that can arise if you’ve been left out of a will and can claim through the Family Protection Act or Testamentary Promises Act. You can also consult us about disputes between beneficiaries and cases involving modifications to a will where undue influence or the will-maker’s capacity may be a factor. Another area of our work related to wills is the validation of testamentary documents, which define last wishes but don’t meet all the requirements of a legal will.

Need advice on Trust Disputes?
Contact the expert team at Hesketh Henry.

Examples of work completed by our team include:

  • Acting for and advising private and charitable trusts in both contentious and no-contentious matters, including acting for the successful parties in the leading Court of Appeal decision on the variation of charitable trusts (Trustee of McElroy Trust v Objectors); and
  • Re Maguire (deceased) [2012] 2 NZLR 845. Defending an application by residual beneficiaries for information forming part of an estate.
Key Contacts

Insights & Opinion / Trust Disputes

Legler v Formannoij [2022] NZCA 607 – Self Dealing for an Improper Purpose?
In Legler v Formannoij [2022] NZCA 607, the children of a deceased father challenge their stepmother’s decision to appoint a corporate trustee, exclude the children and the family trust as beneficia...
09.06.2023 Posted in Private Wealth
Family Hands Paper Dolls Wide BW
Variations of Trust: Obtaining the Court’s Blessing
In Re Jury Family Trusts[1] the High Court was asked to ‘bless’ proposed variations of mirror trusts to avoid significant tax liabilities. First things first, what are mirror trusts? Mirror Trusts...
10.02.2023 Posted in Private Wealth
Fiduciary Duties to Adult Children – Court of Appeal rule differently
The Court of Appeal’s recent decision in D and E Ltd v A, B and C[1] overruled the High Court’s landmark decision in that case[2].  The High Court held that a fiduciary duty existed between a fat...
03.11.2022 Posted in Private Wealth
IMG  Edit for Website
The Settlors’ Plan
When you set up a trust, your plans and wishes count.
06.09.2022 Posted in Private Wealth
Putting all your assets in trust? What can your children do about it?
The High Court holds that a fiduciary duty can be owed to adult children.
22.02.2022 Posted in Private Wealth
Trustee crop
Trustee Meetings Key: Duty on Trustees under the Trusts Act to consider exercising their powers
The Trusts Act 2019 ("Act") comes into force on 30 January 2021 and with it comes the partial codification of trustee duties.
16.04.2020 Posted in Private Wealth
Take Care with Beneficiary Loan Accounts in Credit
It is common for family trusts to resolve that a distribution be made to beneficiaries but the actual amount paid to the beneficiaries is less than the authorised “distribution”.  In the ...
04.02.2020 Posted in Private Wealth
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