Norfolk & Plymouth Estate and Business Planning Council

“Decanting: “Revoking” an Irrevocable Trust?”- January 21, 2016


Trust decanting – the act of distributing trust assets from an old trust to a new trust with different terms – has recently gained attention as a means for trustees to address changed or unforeseen circumstances that arise in the course of trust administration.   

This presentation will:

  • Review Morse v. Kraft – the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court case addressing a situation where the Court found that the trustee’s authority to distribute trust assets included the authority to distribute (or “decant”) the trust assets to a new trust with different terms;
  • Consider the types of trusts that might permit the trustees to decant;
  • Discuss the fiduciary, tax, and procedural considerations involved in the decision to decant a trust; and
  • Consider other available methods to address changed or unforeseen circumstances that arise in the course of trust administration.

Meet Our Panel:

Andrew D. Rothstein is a Director and Shareholder in the Private Client and Trust group at Goulston & Storrs PC, in Boston.  He concentrates his practice in the areas of wealth transfer planning and estate and trust administration with special attention to related estate, gift, generation skipping and income tax matters.  Andy is a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel and currently serves as the Co-Chair of the Trusts and Estates Section of the Boston Bar Association.  Andy earned his LL.M. in taxation from Boston University School of Law (2000), his J.D., cum laude, from Case Western Reserve University School of Law (1998), and his B.A. from Oberlin College (1995).  Andy has written and lectured extensively on various topics related to wealth transfer planning and associated tax matters.

He may be reached at (617) 574-4089 or

Mark Anderson develops customized wealth strategies and financial plans for high-net- worth individuals, families, and business owners in New England, New York City and New Jersey. He works with his clients and their advisors to structure plans that meet their wealth objectives.

Prior to Wilmington Trust, Mark was a T&E attorney at Nutter, McClennen & Fish where he advised clients on estate/gift tax planning, wealth transfer, and trust/estate administration. Before that, Mark was a financial analyst at GE and Merrill Lynch.

Mark earned his JD from Boston College and graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Syracuse University with a degree in Economics and Policy Studies. He is admitted to practice law in Massachusetts and is a member of BEPC, the Family Business Association and the Boston chapter of the Exit Planning Exchange.

Mark also serves as a representative Town Meeting member in Winchester, as well as on the Committee for Government Regulations.


Norfolk & Plymouth Business and Estate Planning Council


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