Class of objects

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The group of people eligible to be considered beneficiaries under a trust. For a fixed trust, the class of objects is identical to the set of designated beneficiaries. Where the trustees are accorded a discretion to select who will benefit under the trust, the class of objects may be wider than the (final) set of beneficiaries. This is because the trustees may choose to withhold the status of 'beneficiary' (and all that this entails) from certain members of the class of objects.

Following McPhail v Doulton (1971), the class of objects in any discretionary trust is determined by the 'is or is not' test, also known as the 'any given postulant' test.

See also certainty of objects.

Trust Law