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Ohio Trust Law Trustee Duty of Impartiality

July 25, 2018, by Daniel McGowan, on New Probate & Trust Cases, Probate Law and Procedure |

The duty of impartiality is an important aspect of the duty of loyalty.  Under the Ohio Trust Code, and the Uniform Prudent Investor Act, a trustee is bound to act impartially regarding all aspects of trust administration and to decisions by a trustee with respect to distributions, investment and management of trust property. 

Good faith

The duty to act impartially does not mean that the trustee must treat the beneficiaries equally.  Rather, the trustee must treat the beneficiaries equitably in light of the purposes and terms of the trust.  A settlor who prefers that the trustee, when making decisions, generally favor the interests of one beneficiary over those of others should provide appropriate guidance in the terms of the trust.  See Restatement (Second) of section 183 cmt. a (1959).