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Belize Trust Legislation

Trusts formed under a modern Belize Trust Act in 1992, are highly secure, since a Belizean court cannot set aside or vary a Belizean trust.

In order to understand the operations of the Belize Trust Act and particularly its asset protection features, it is required to have both detailed knownledge of the legal background against which the legislation was enacted, and of the particular features of the Act.

A Belize court cannot entertain any claim against the trust property based on foreign court order and connected with marriage or divorce, succession or claims of creditors.

The law allows for a protector who may also be a settlor, trustee or beneficiary. A protector has a fiduciary obligation to the beneficiaries of the trust, although he is not considered a trustee.

The law provides for the creation of spendthrift trusts and allows a settlor to be the beneficiary of a spendthrift trust. The Settlors and beneficiaries may provide the trustees with memorandum of wishes to guide them.

For most types of trust, minimum number of trustees is one and maximum is four. A trustee may also be a beneficiary and a settlor. Individuals serving as Trustees are legally carrying personal liability for any losses arising from breach of trust. Corporate trustees are not personally liable.

The registration of trusts with the Belize Registrar is optional and can be made for a fee of US$100. The Registrar is required to issue a certificate of registraion. The written consent of the trustee is needed for entry in the register of trusts.