Duhaime's Law Dictionary

Trustee De Son Tort Definition:

A person who is not a regularly appointed trustee but because of interference with the trust can be held by a court as constructive trustee which entails liability for losses to the trust.

A trustee "of his own wrong".

In Selangor United Rubber, the Court used these words in regards to a trustee de son tort as being one of two types of constructuve trustee: as follows

"Those who, though not appointed trustees, take on themselves to act as such and to possess and administer trust property for the beneficiaries, such as trustees de son tort. Distinguishing features ... are (a) they do not claim to act in their own right but for the beneficiaries, and (b) their assumption to act is not of itself a ground of liability ... and still there is status as trustees precedes the occurrence which may be the subject of claim against them."

In 1997, Canada's Supreme Court added:

" To be liable as trustees de son tort, strangers to the trust must commit a breach of trust while acting as trustees.  Such persons are not appointed trustees but  take on themselves to act as such and to possess and administer trust property."


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