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Family Changes Trust Rules on Inheritance

A wealthy family has changed the inheritance rules linked to the estate that has been in the family for generations, to ensure that the same-sex partner of any gay descendants will be entitled to a life-interest in the property, reports the Daily Mail.

Trumpington Hall was acquired by the Pembertons in 1675, and in 1965 a family trust was established to ensure it could be passed down through the family in the most tax-efficient way.

The way the trust was written apparently meant that any civil partners or spouses from a same-sex marriage would have no right to remain in the home following the death of their partner. The current owner of the estate, Richard Pemberton, said he felt a ‘moral obligation’ to change this, and therefore applied to the High Court for permission to amend the terms of this trust, to ensure the rights of any future gay partners would be protected.

The High Court judge agreed with the request, commenting that the trust was in need of an overhaul.

“The proposed variation will be for the benefit of the family as a whole and therefore of benefit to each individual member,” he said.

At the same time, the family also successfully sought to extend the duration of the trust by another 125 years, which means it is now due to run until 2141.

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