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C.A. WHITE AND FLO B. WHITE (11/20/84)

decided: November 20, 1984.

IN RE C.A. WHITE AND FLO B. WHITE, DEED OF TRUST DATED DECEMBER 13, 1965. APPEAL OF RAYMOND WHITE AND J. NEVIN WHITE, TRUSTEES. APPEAL OF THE JUNIATA VALLEY BANK


No. 18 M.D. Appeal Docket 1984, No. 19 M.D. Appeal Docket 1984, Appeals from the Order of the Superior Court of Pennsylvania dated November 4, 1983 at No. 103 Harrisburg 1981, reversing the Order dated March 19, 1981 of the Court of Common Pleas of the Forty-First Judicial District of Pennsylvania, Juniata County Branch, Orphans' Court Division, at Estate No. 34-77-67, Pa. Super. , 467 A.2d. 1148 (1983)

COUNSEL

Robert Costigan, Philadelphia, for appellee Kenneth K. King, et al.

Samuel T. Swansen, Joseph D. Holston, Jr., for appellant Juanita Valley Bank.

Dorrance R. Belin, James W. Reid, John R. O'Brien, Scranton, for Sarah King, et al.

John C. Garner, Robert J. Hoelscher, Philadelphia, for appellees Raymond White & J. Nevin White, trustees.

Nix, C.j., and Larsen, Flaherty, McDermott, Hutchinson, Zappala and Papadakos, JJ. Hutchinson, J., filed a concurring and dissenting opinion. McDermott, J., filed a dissenting opinion in which Nix, C.j., joined.

Author: Zappala

[ 506 Pa. Page 220]

Opinion

Before this Court is a review of the Superior Court order reversing the order of the lower court granting the petition of Juniata Valley Bank to resign as a corporate trustee*fn1

[ 506 Pa. Page 221]

    and denying a petition to remove Raymond White as an individual trustee.

By an agreement dated December 13, 1965, C.A. White and Flo B. White, his wife, created an inter vivos trust naming their thirteen grandchildren as beneficiaries, and appointing C.A. White, his two sons, Raymond White (White) and J. Nevin White, his son-in-law, Roy A. Wingate, and Juniata Valley Bank (Bank) as Trustees. The purpose of the trust is to provide income to the minor beneficiaries until such time as each beneficiary reaches twenty-five years of age. At twenty-five, each beneficiary is entitled to receive one-half of his share of the trust corpus. The remaining one-half is to be distributed upon reaching the age of thirty.

The trust assets consist mostly of timber and coal properties situate in central Pennsylvania and valued by the Bank as of May 28, 1980 at $3,245,773.83. The agreement grants broad discretionary powers to the Trustees, including the power to: hold and continue to hold investment property; invest and reinvest without restriction in any securities or property deemed to be for the best interest of the trust or the beneficiaries; rent or lease property for such time and upon such terms as the Trustees in their discretion deem appropriate; sell and convey any trust property which they determine is in the best interest of the trust and its beneficiaries; and, finally, act as they shall see fit under the circumstances based upon their judgment as to the best course to pursue on behalf of the trust and its beneficiaries. In exercising their powers, the Trustees are not required to obtain the consent of any other person or any court.

C.A. White resigned as a Trustee on December 15, 1965. On June 25, 1980, the Bank and Wingate filed a Petition to Resign as Trustees. In their Petition, they indicated that a dispute arose between Raymond White and themselves regarding investment and management of certain timber and coal resources of the trust. As a result of the actions of the Bank and Wingate, ...


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