Book review of Declarations of Trust: A Drafting Handbook 6th Edition

 In Book Reviews for Private Client practitioners

Disclaimer: LawSkills provides training for the legal industry and does not provide legal advice to members of the public. For help or guidance please seek the services of a qualified practitioner.

Declarations of Trust: A Drafting Handbook 6th EditionThis is a book review by Gill Steel of Declarations of Trust: A Drafting Handbook 6th Edition ISBN 978-0-414-11191-2.


Catherine Sanders has written a practical book providing the practitioner with over 50 useful precedents to cover all situations where declarations of trust can be used to protect clients’ interests. Many practitioners are interested in this area particularly now that the scope of the Trust Registration Service affects some declarations of trust which this edition has been updated to include. It explains the role of a declaration of trust, when it should be used and what it should achieve.


This book contains nine chapters and 53 precedents within its 153 pages. The chapters covered the following content:

  • Chapter 1 – General Principles
  • Chapter 2 – Property purchased as tenants in common
  • Chapter 3 – Property purchased by beneficial joint tenants: Subsequent adjustment of interest
  • Chapter 4 – Sole legal owner of home holding for another (or for self and another)
  • Chapter 5 – Insurance policies
  • Chapter 6 – Company shareholdings
  • Chapter 7 – Indivisible assets
  • Chapter 8 – In conjunction with Wills: The half-secret trust and mutual Wills
  • Chapter 9 – Joint bank accounts

The large number of precedents will be particularly helpful.

FREE monthly newsletter

Wills | Probate | Trusts | Tax  | Elderly & Vulnerable Client

  • Relevant learning and development opportunities
  • News, articles and LawSkills’ services
  • Communications which help you find appropriate training in your area

Structure & Layout

Each chapter consists of a number of topics with sub-headings and each paragraph is numbered for ease of investigation.

The precedents are listed in the contents page and form an extensive appendix. They range from a simple precedent following a purchase of property by two persons as tenants in common with an agreement on division of sale proceeds in percentage shares where there is no mortgage; to the more complex declaration for a home held on trust until the happening of certain events, then for former spouses in unequal shares, occupying spouse responsible for repairs etc and power to replace property.


The essence of this book is its wide range of useful precedents.

Clarity & readability

The book takes on board the development of the TRS and its explanation of this is a good indicator of the clarity the author has brought to her subject: “Since most of the precedents in this book create bare trusts, then, unless they fall within one of the excluded categories, they will be registrable as express, rather than taxable, trusts. However, a number of them will fall into excluded categories. More detail is given in the individual chapters….”

Relevance to practitioners

This little gem of a book is relevant to conveyancing practitioners but also family lawyers and estate planning practitioners who need to put in place appropriate declarations to protect their clients and their wealth. It should be on the bookshelf of all private client practitioners.

The LawSkills Monthly Digest

Subscribe to our comprehensive Monthly Digest for insightful feedback on Wills, Probate, Trusts, Tax and Elderly & Vulnerable client matters

Not complicated to read  |  Requires no internet searching |  Simply an informative pdf emailed to your inbox including practice points & tips

Subscribe now for monthly insightful feedback on key issues.

All for only £120 + VAT per year
(£97.50 for 10+)

Lawskills Digest
Recent Posts
LawSkills Book Reviews for private client practitionersLawSkills Book Reviews for private client practitioners