Welcome to the sixth edition of our Private Client Bulletin, bringing you the latest private client and trust news and insights from Bermuda, the Cayman Islands, BVI and Asia.

This edition features articles on offshore trust law, marital disputes, and highlights our team's recent contribution to the Mondaq Private Client Comparative Guides.

We also share a roundup of news from our Hong Kong office and reintroduce you to our longstanding team member, Jeffrey Elkinson who is profiled in this edition.

We trust that you find these articles useful and thank you for your continuing business.

Enjoy the read!

Peter Pearman
Global Head of Private Client & Trust

The Issue With 'Issue' - Difficulties Arising With Potential Distinctions Between Children Born Inside and Outside Marriage
Peter A.S. Pearman and Grace Quinn, Bermuda

Generally speaking, the legal distinction between legitimate and illegitimate children has been largely abolished. However, for some individuals, the distinction remains important and they wish assets to pass through a legitimate line. In Bermuda, there are several things a responsible trustee can do to mitigate the potential risks of family disharmony and expensive litigation should difficulties arise.

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When Can an Offshore Court Act as an Auxiliary Court?
Robert Lindley and Wesley O'Brien, Cayman Islands

In certain circumstances an onshore family court has requested an offshore court to act as an 'auxiliary court' to divorce proceedings. To understand the extent to which offshore trust law and offshore courts will protect trusts from a variation order granted in foreign divorce proceedings, the authors discuss various judgments from the courts of the Cayman Islands and Jersey.

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The Evolution of the "Watchdog" Role of Protectors
Anna Bruce-Smith, Ben Adamson, Grace Quinn and Britt Smith, Bermuda

The Supreme Court of Bermuda released its ruling in 'In the Matter of the X Trusts' determining whether the Protector role was akin to a watchdog or whether it was fully discretionary (so that they could reach their own conclusions on the issues before them). The judgement is essential reading for those who draft trust deeds with protector provisions.

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Modernisation of the British Virgin Islands Trust Legislation
Robert Lindley, British Virgin Islands

Legislative amendments to the British Virgin Islands' Trustee Act demonstrate the island's engagement in the process of fine-tuning the legislation by way of reforms. These welcome improvements ensure that the BVI remains a leading offshore jurisdiction for the establishment, administration, and maintenance of trusts.

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Divorcing the In-Laws: Marital Disputes and Their Effect on Wider Family Finances
Sarah Bailey-Munroe, Bermuda

In most cases, a marriage represents the joining of two families, rather than simply the two individuals who take vows. It is perhaps unsurprising therefore that the emotional fallout of a divorce can similarly involve the wider family. When gifting or loaning of property and cash during a marriage takes place on an informal basis with little consideration or legal advice, it can provide fertile ground for disputes over ownership upon divorce.

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Cayman STAR Trusts
Robert Lindley and Wesley O'Brien, Cayman Islands

STAR Trusts are a form of trust that is exclusive to the Cayman Islands. They have a wide variety of practical applications. The unique features of a STAR Trust provide clients with structuring options that are often not possible with an ordinary trust, and which can be particularly useful in a commercial and transactional context. Here we summarise some of the main features and applications of this type of trust.

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Mondaq Comparative Guides
Robert Lindley and Wesley O'Brien, Cayman Islands
Anna Bruce-Smith, Bermuda

Our global Private Client & Trust team is pleased to have contributed to the Mondaq Private Client Comparative Guide which shares key points of law and practice and allows you to compare regulatory environments and laws across multiple jurisdictions.

Read more » Cayman Islands Guide

Read more » Bermuda Guide

Jeffrey Elkinson

Meet the Team: Q&A with Jeffrey Elkinson

In this edition of the Private Client & Trust Bulletin, we sit down with Conyers Director, Jeffrey Elkinson. Jeffrey has been with the Bermuda office of Conyers for 33 years and is a well-known arbitrator and counsel. He has three law degrees, is admitted to practise in seven jurisdictions, is a Special Assistant Attorney General for Massachusetts and sits as an Assistant Justice of the Bermuda Supreme Court. He is also a past president of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, the pre-eminent global training organisation for dispute resolution. Jeffrey speaks about career highlights, the push for global corporate taxation and why firewall legislation is important.

Read the Q&A »

Team News - Hong Kong

China Business Law Awards 2021

The Conyers Private Client and Trust team was recognised by the China Business Law Awards 2021 in the Family Wealth Management category. The award acknowledges the firm for providing intelligent, dependable advice to a diverse international group of clients. Conyers was also named Best Offshore Law Firm for the ninth consecutive year. The winners were announced in May 2021 by China Business Law Journal.

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Conyers Hong Kong Webinar Series

Partner Peter Ch'ng delivered a webinar on Cayman Foundations and LLCs, as part of the Hong Kong office's ongoing webinar series in August. Peter explained Cayman Foundations and Cayman LLCs along with their history, unique features and how they are different from standard companies or partnerships. He also provided an overview of their potential uses in family wealth planning and private equity, and covered a brief economic substance analysis.

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The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.