Powers of Fiduciaries

SECTION 18-4-2

§ 18-4-2. Powers of trustees.

(a) Every trust, inter vivos or testamentary, previously or subsequently effective, in which no provision is made to the contrary, shall be deemed to give to the trustees or trustee under the trust for the time being, in addition to any other power they may lawfully have, full power in their, his, or her discretion, or if a corporation in the discretion of its duly authorized officer or committee:

(1) To invest and reinvest the trust estate, or any part of it, in real or personal property, foreign or domestic, including, without limiting the generality of the preceding provisions, savings accounts of banks and trust companies and shares of stock or other securities of corporations, building and loan associations, investment trusts, and investment companies, and to vary from time to time the investments of the trust estate;

(2) To exercise discretionary powers of sale, lease, partition by suit or deed, and exchange over the trust estate, or any part of it, whether real or personal property; in case of any sale, to sell at public or private sale, for cash or on credit and together or in parcels; in case of any lease, to lease for a period that the trustees or trustee shall deem advisable, whether terminating during the continuance of the trusts or thereafter; and in case of any partition or in case of any exchange, to give or receive money for equality of partition or exchange;

(3) To appoint a proxy or proxies, with or without power of substitution, to vote shares of a corporation or association included in the trust estate as directed or in a manner that the proxy or proxies shall deem best;

(4) To participate in, assent to, or disapprove any plan for the reorganization, recapitalization, consolidation, merger, winding up, or readjustment of the indebtedness of any corporation or association, and to take any and all action required by reason of participation in the plan; and

(5) Upon the termination of any trust with respect to any portion of the trust estate, to set aside the portion from the remainder of the trust estate; upon the termination of any trust with respect to the entire trust estate, or any part of it, to partition the trust estate into the shares, if any, in which it is distributable; and in connection with the setting aside of any portion or any partition to exercise the power of sale conferred by this section upon the trustees or trustee, and to allocate to any share in or part of the trust estate specific investments at their fair value at the time of allocation as determined by the trustees or trustee acting in good faith.

(6) To donate a conservation easement on any real property in order to obtain the benefit of the estate tax exclusion allowed under §§ 170 and 2031(c), respectively, of the United States Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended, if:

(i) Each party who has an interest in the real property that would be affected by the conservation easement consents in writing to the donation, or

(ii) The trust instrument directs, requires or permits a donation of a conservation easement in gross, in which case no consent shall be required.

(b) The trustees or trustee may be authorized by the superior court to execute any or all of the powers set forth in subdivisions (a)(1) to (a)(5) of this section, upon the terms and conditions that the court may deem proper, notwithstanding any provision of any trust instrument which is or may possibly be deemed to be inconsistent with the exercise of any of these powers, if, in the opinion of the court, authority to exercise the power or powers is or may become necessary or desirable to enable the trustees or trustee to properly perform the duties and accomplish the purposes of the trust, the authorization to be granted only upon written application to a justice of the court and upon the notice, if any, that the justice may direct.

History of Section.
(G.L. 1896, ch. 208, § 12; G.L. 1909, ch. 259, § 12; G.L. 1923, ch. 303, § 12; G.L. 1938, ch. 486, § 10; G.L. 1956, § 18-4-2; R.P.L. 1957, ch. 48, § 1; P.L. 1964, ch. 55, § 1; P.L. 1987, ch. 34, § 1; P.L. 2009, ch. 100, § 1; P.L. 2009, ch. 101, § 1.)