Very simple life interest trust

Hello all

I have an old Will with a very basic life interest trust. It says little more than:

‘I give [property] to my Trustees to hold for [wife] for life’

There are some conditions (she must pay expenses, outgoings etc…). Other than that, there is nothing regarding the operation of this trust.

What powers do the trustees have if, say, the wife needs to move out - can they let out the property? Sell it? Replace it? What happens to the sale proceeds?

My instincts are telling me that they have no powers to dispose of the property (subject to any agreements between all beneficiaries).

Any ideas?

Many thanks


You do not say what happens if the wife dies. If the will trust does not set out or incorporate by reference administrative provisions there are nonetheless default provisions in the Trustee Acts 1925 and 2000 and for a trust of land the Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act 1996. If you are not familiar with these you should direct your questions to someone who is and can interact with you in a way that this Forum cannot.

Jack Harper