Heugh v Scard: CA 1875

Sir George Jessel MR said: ‘In certain cases of mere neglect or refusal to furnish accounts, when the neglect is very gross or the refusal wholly indefensible, I reserve to myself the right of making the executor or trustee pay the costs of litigation caused by his neglect or refusal. But I expressly guard myself against saying that in every case of mere neglect, or even in every case of mere neglect, or even in every case of mere refusal, an honest executor or trustee who has fairly discharged his duty – an onerous and thankless one – is to pay costs . . In this case I find inexcusable delay, inexcusable refusal to furnish accounts, and misconduct in dealing with the trust fund . . I think he [the executor] must pay the costs of the suit, except the cost of vouching the accounts.’
References: (1875) 33 LT 659
Judges: Sir George Jessel MR
This case is cited by:

  • Applied – In Re Skinner ChD 1904
    A beneficiary of a will trust brought an action for an account, having had little or no accounting from the executors and trustees (one a professional solicitor, entitled to charge) since the testator died more than two years before the action was . .
    ([1904] 1 Ch 289)
  • Cited – Royal National Lifeboat Institution and Others v Headley and Another ChD 28-Jul-2016
    Beneficiaries’ right to information from estate
    The claimant charities sought payment of interests under the will following the dropping of two life interests. They now requested various documents forming accounts of the estate.
    Held: The charities were entitled to some but not to all of . .
    (, [2016] EWHC 1948 (Ch))
  • Cited – Blades v Isaac and Another ChD 21-Mar-2016
    Claim by beneficiary under discretionary trust.
    Held: A trustee’s wrongful failure to provide information does not necessarily justify an adverse costs order. . .
    (, [2016] EWHC 601 (Ch))

These lists may be incomplete.
Last Update: 21 November 2020; Ref: scu.567858