In re Whiteley: 1886

Lindley LJ considered the duties of a trustee in exercising his powers of investment and said: ‘The principle applicable to cases of this description was stated . . to be that a trustee ought to conduct the business of the trust in the same manner that an ordinary prudent man of business would conduct his own, and that beyond that there is no liability or obligation on the trustee. I accept this principle; but in applying it care must be taken not to lose sight of the fact that the business of the trustee, and the business which the ordinary prudent man is supposed to be conducting for himself, is the business of investing money for the benefit of persons who are to enjoy it at some future time, and not for the sole benefit of the person entitled to the present income. The duty of a trustee is not to take such care only as a prudent man would take if he had only himself to consider; the duty rather is to take such care as an ordinary prudent man would take if he were minded to make an investment for the benefit of other people for whom he felt morally bound to provide.’

Lindley LJ
(1886) 33 ChD 347
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedCowan v Scargill and Others ChD 13-Apr-1984
Trustee’s duties in relation to investments
Within the National Coal Board Pension scheme, the trustees appointed by the NCB were concerned at the activities of the trustees of the miners, and sought directions from the court. The defendants refused to allow any funds to be invested abroad. . .
CitedNestle v National Westminster Bank CA 6-May-1992
The claimant said that the defendant bank as trustee of her late father’s estate had been negligent in its investment of trust assets.
Held: The claimant had failed to establish either a breach of trust or any loss flowing from it, though . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Leading Case

Updated: 10 November 2021; Ref: scu.222827