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Uchtorff v. Hanson

Iowa Supreme Court
693 N.W.2d 790 (2005)


Facts

Alfred Uchtorff’s will placed certain property into a trust, with the trust income to be paid to his wife, Pearl, during her lifetime. Under the will, upon Pearl’s death or remarriage the trust property was to go to their son Richard, if he survived Alfred, “as an indefeasibly vested interest in fee.” If Richard did not survive Alfred then the trust property was to go into a trust for the benefit of Richard’s children. Alfred was survived by Pearl and Richard. After Alfred’s death, Richard divorced and married Christa. Richard died before Pearl, and his will left his estate to Christa. Upon Pearl’s death, Christa Uchtorff (plaintiff) argued that Richard’s interest in the trust vested upon Alfred’s death, and should pass to her under Richard’s will. Richard’s children, Sally Hanson, Taylor Armstrong-Lucas, and Julie Kurt (the children) (defendants) argued that they should receive the trust assets because Richard did not survive the life tenant, Pearl. The district court found in favor of the children, and Christa appealed.

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Streit, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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