Flexible Life Interest - definition of beneficiaries


I have a Will where residue to held on Flexible Life Interest Trusts for surviving spouse for life then to children/grandchildren.

The trust contains the following clause:

‘my Trustees may appoint that they hold the whole or part of the Trust Fund for the benefit of any of the beneficiaries of this clause on such terms as my Trustees think fit’

Do you think that the term ‘beneficiaries’ includes an appointment to the surviving spouse? Presumably the consent of the remaindermen is not required.


Lyndsey McHale
McHale Baker

Unless beneficiaries is a defined term, I am inclined to the view that the power could be used to appoint income or capital to anyone identified as a beneficiary of the trust fund, including the surviving spouse.

Although I suggest it would be usual to define the term beneficiaries within the clause in question, there is no consistency as to where any definition might be included, so it is important to read the entire will just in case it’s tucked away in the administrative provisions, for example.

Paul Saunders FCIB TEP

Independent Trust Consultant

Providing support and advice to fellow professionals