Shelley v. Shelley
Oregon Supreme Court
354 P.2d 282 (1960)
Grant (defendant) had four children from two marriages that both ended in divorce. Both divorce decrees ordered Grant to pay child support and one ordered alimony payments, but Grant failed to pay either and disappeared. Since Grant was the beneficiary of a trust, his former wives and children sought to reach the assets of the trust in satisfaction of the child support and alimony owed them. The trust had been created by his father’s will to pay income to Grant for life but restricted distribution of the trust corpus until after Grant turned thirty years of age, and then limited it to such amounts that the trustee and other specified persons, in their discretion, considered Grant capable of properly investing. In addition, the trustee was given discretion to distribute trust corpus to Grant or to his children “in an emergency” to provide for their support and care where “unusual and extraordinary expenses are necessary.” The trust also contained a spendthrift provision that restrained Grant from transferring or encumbering his interest in either principle or income and specifically provided that the trust principle and income may not be subject to creditors’ claims. The bank acting as trustee (defendant) interpleaded to respond to the claims against Grant’s beneficial interest in the trust. The matter was ultimately appealed to the Oregon Supreme Court to determine whether the trust’s spendthrift provision was enforceable against child support and alimony claims. The trustee bank argued on appeal that the case finding a spendthrift provision ineffective against claims for alimony and child support should be overruled as inconsistent with a testator’s right to dispose of his property as he chooses.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (O'Connell, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 166,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 13,800 briefs, keyed to 187 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.