TM v. AH [2016] EWHC 572 (Fam)

Consideration of the joinder of trustees following an application to vary a nuptial settlement


  • W sought to vary two trusts (based in Switzerland and the BVI respectively) on the grounds that they were nuptial settlements.
  • W applied to join the trustees as parties to the litigation.


  • Moor J granted W’s application and joined the trustees as parties to the litigation.
  • His lordship expressly disagreed with Mostyn J’s conclusions in DR v. GR [2013] EWHC 1196 that once the trustees had been served, matters could be determined without the need for them to be necessarily joined as parties.
  • Moor J held that Munby J (as he then was) had been very clear in A v. A & St. George’s Trustees that for orders to be binding on trustees they had to be joined as parties.
  • In addition, the right to a fair trial enshrined in Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights requires trustees to be joined before any court ordered a variation of the trusts of which they were trustees.