Actions Resulted in Younger Generations Getting $1 Million in Distributions Where Prior Distributions Only Went To Senior Generation Beneficiaries.
Neither the lower nor appellate courts in Gaynor v. Bulen, Case No. D064872 (4th Dist., Div. 1 Nov. 20, 2014) (unpublished) had much trouble with awarding certain former trustees of a trust attorney’s fees of $260,948.34 under a common fund fee-recovery theory. The reason was that the former trustees were able to obtain an appointment of a neutral corporate trustee and $1 million in distributions were made to younger generation beneficiaries, while only senior generation beneficiaries got multi-millions in distributions in the past. Although the common fund theory was enough, we surmise the appellate court would have affirmed under the substantial benefit theory also—although it did not have to pass on this ground for recovery.