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HMRC internal manual

Capital Gains Manual

Trusts: definition: purposes

There must be PURPOSES. Scottish lawyers speak of a trust having purposes. Thisdescribes the basic aims of the trustees in holding the property. An English lawyer mightspeak of obligations or trusts. It is not enough for there to be beneficiaries withoutanyone knowing what benefits they are to take.

The trust deed or will may contain detailed provisions as to how the trustees are to actin investing property and providing benefits. If these are not provided then there are insome cases statutory rules and in other cases rules laid down by the courts. In generalthe deed or will can override any of these rules except those which fix the maximum lifeof a trust or those concerned with accumulating income.