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Charitable Trusts II

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kazzasingh's version from 2018-04-28 14:11

Initial failure of a charitable trust

Question Answer
Re Lysaght (1996)Paramount intention on the part of the donor to give effect to a charitable purpose which you can still carry out (notwithstanding that you cannot give effect to the precise terms of the gift that he's tried to use). Was the donee trying to do something so specific that if it fails you cannot say that he had a general charitable intention? If so, it's not in the realm of the cy-près doctrine. But if we can look at the gift and say that although it hasn't been phrased in a way that we cannot carry out, it is still an attempt to benefit charity, we can use the cy-près doctrine.
Re Harwood (1936)If the settlor intended to benefit a specific organization, as opposed to charity in general, then there won't be a charitable intention.
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Justifications of the cy-près doctrine

Question Answer
Cy-près doctrineWhen the original objective became impossible to perform, the cy-près doctrine allows the court to amend the terms of the charitable trust as closely as possible to the original intention of the testator or settlor to prevent the trust from failing.
A-G v Downing (1767)Spiritual justification --> "Charity was an expiation of sin and to be rewarded in another state...The Court thought that being equally meritorious would entitle him to the same reward."
Philpott v St George's HospitalDonor intention justification --> applying the property on a failed charitable trust to an alternative charitable purpose is simply giving effect to the donor's charitable intention.
Re Dominion's Student's Hall Trust (1947)Educational trust cases --> where the donor has attempted to put some sort of discriminatory intention or limit on the extent of their philanthropy. The court's used the cy-près doctrine to strip away those discriminatory provisions and apply the property to a similar purpose that isn't discriminatory. HELD: skin colour discrimination.
Re Lysaght (1996)Educational trust cases --> where the donor has attempted to put some sort of discriminatory intention or limit on the extent of their philanthropy. The court's used the cy-près doctrine to strip away those discriminatory provisions and apply the property to a similar purpose that isn't discriminatory. Trust to fund scholarship which specifically precluded Roman Catholics. HELD: discriminatory
Re Woodham's (dec'd)Educational trust cases --> where the donor has attempted to put some sort of discriminatory intention or limit on the extent of their philanthropy. The court's used the cy-près doctrine to strip away those discriminatory provisions and apply the property to a similar purpose that isn't discriminatory. Concerned a series of music scholarships that were limited to orphans. HELD: the cy-près doctrine was used to remove this provision.
Costa v De Pas (1754)Trust for the advancement of Judaism. At the time it was an unlawful purpose in this country. The court said this had to fail so they applied to property instead to advance Christianity. JUSTIFICATION: UCL professor said that there is no issue as they're both abrahamic religions.
A-G v The Ironmongers' Company (1840-1)Picking purposes as near as possible to the original. A trust had been set up for redeeming British slaves abroad. This was not a purpose which could be carried out anymore because the area in which it intended to operate had long since abloshed slavery. The money left over from this was applied cy-près but the purpose that they picked was simply supporting charity schools in England.
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Prohibition on Political Purposes

Question Answer
Bowman v Secular Society LtdEven if the charity falls under one of the categories as a charitable purpose, it will still fail if it is political.
National Anti-Vivisection Society v IRC (1948)It had as its express object, the purpose of repealing The Cruelty to Animals Act. HELD: it had a political purpose and therefore it could not have a charitable status.
McGovern v A-G (1982)What is 'political'? You have a politcial purpose if you seek to change government policy. HELD: Amnesty could not get charitable status as one of its aims was to secure the release of political prisoners. (This rule used to be very restrictive --> any campaigning had to be subsidiary and ancillary to anything else that you did. However the Law Commission has now accepted that SOMETIMES it might be appropriate for charity to temporarily devote all of its resources to a political campaign. Any campaigning that a charity is permitted to do, must be done in an impartial way.
De Bonneval (1828)Dubious origins --> A trust to promote principles critical of the existing law was void as being contrary to public policy. (No reference to politicals - could be argued that it was void as it was contrary to public policy).
IRC v Temperance Council of Christian Churches of England and Wales (1926)Concerned the promotion of temperance. HELD: this was a charitable purpose but if it was promoted through legislative reform, then it would not be charitable. (Only High Court so doesn't bind the House of Lords)...
Why can't you have a political purpose? (Essay Q)(a) Problems ascertaining public benefit? The court cannot judge whether a particular change in the law would be for the public benefit (b) Usurping the legislature (c) Conflict of interest (d) Relevance of Tax Relief
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Independent School's Council

Question Answer
Re Resch's WTPublic schools can charge fees (BUT Lord Wilberforce stated that there were some limits - a hospital that charged fees would not be a charitable body if the benefits that it provides are not for a sufficiently large class of the public to meet the test of public character. If you specifically target the rich (so that nobody other than the rich can be benefitted, then that is unacceptable). HELD: as long as you are reinvesting back into the charitable purpose, that is fine.
R v Charity Commission (2012)The effect of Re Resch is that you cannot exclude the poor from the opportunity to benefit from any charity.
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