Conditional Love: Incentive Trusts and the Inflexibility Problem


This Article examines the contemporary phenomenon of incentive trusts: trusts that use money to encourage or discourage certain behaviors. Using evidence from Internet websites, practitioner articles, and newspaper articles, the Article considers the likely provisions that a typical incentive trust might have, and explains how such trusts might lead to a problem of inflexibility when they are not drafted so as to take into account the possibility of changed circumstances. The Article also examines current law regarding trust modification and termination as well as recent reform proposals, and suggests some alternatives that might better take into account the particular characteristics of incentive trusts.


Estates and Trusts

Date of this Version

February 2006