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Industrial National Bank of Rhode Island v. Barrett

Rhode Island Supreme Court
220 A.2d 517 (1966)


Facts

Arthur Tilley’s will placed his property into a trust for the benefit of his wife, Mary Tilley, during her lifetime. Arthur’s will named Industrial National Bank (the bank) as trustee and gave Mary a general testamentary power of appointment over any trust corpus remaining at her death. Mary’s will exercised the general testamentary power of appointment in favor of the bank, to hold the property in trust for the benefit of her granddaughters, Aline Lathan and Evelyn Barrett, or, if they died, for the benefit of their children. Mary’s will stated that the trust would terminate 21 years after the death of the last survivor of the granddaughters or issue of either granddaughter who was alive at the time of Mary’s death. At the time of Arthur’s death, both granddaughters and one great-grandchild were living. At the time of Mary’s death, both granddaughters and seven great-grandchildren were living. One great-grandchild was born after Mary’s death. The bank, as trustee, and Aline, as executor of Mary’s will (plaintiffs), brought an action seeking construction of Mary’s will, and Evelyn and others (defendants) responded. The bank and Aline argued that Mary’s exercise of the power of appointment created under Arthur’s will did not violate the rule against perpetuities because the perpetuity period should be counted from the date of Mary’s exercise of the power, rather than from the date of the power’s creation in Arthur’s will.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Paolino, J.)

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