2016 Delaware Code
Title 25 - Property
CHAPTER 5. RULE AGAINST PERPETUITIES; POWERS OF APPOINTMENT; RULE AGAINST ACCUMULATIONS
§ 503. Rule against perpetuities [For application of this section, see 79 Del. Laws, c. 352, § 6].
(a) No interest created in real property held in trust shall be void by reason of the common-law rule against perpetuities or any common-law rule limiting the duration of noncharitable purpose trusts, and no interest created in personal property held in trust shall be void by reason of any rule, whether the common-law rule against perpetuities, any common-law rule limiting the duration of noncharitable purpose trusts, or otherwise.
(b) In this State, the rule against perpetuities for real property held in trust is that at the expiration of 110 years from the later of the date on which a parcel of real property or an interest in real property is added to or purchased by a trust or the date the trust became irrevocable, such parcel or interest, if still held in such trust, shall be distributed in accordance with the trust instrument regarding distribution of such property upon termination of the trust as though termination occurred at that time, or if no such provisions exist, to the persons then entitled to receive the income of the trust in proportion to the amount of the income so receivable by such beneficiaries, or in equal shares if specific proportions are not specified in the trust instrument. In the event that the trust instrument does not provide for distribution upon termination and there are no income beneficiaries of the trust, such parcel or interest shall be distributed to such then living persons who are then determined to be the trustor's or testator's distributees by the application of the intestacy laws of this State then in effect governing the distribution of intestate real property as though the trustor or testator had died at that particular time, intestate, a resident of this State, and owning the property so distributable.
This rule shall not apply to the following trusts, all of which may be perpetual:
(1) A trust for the benefit of 1 or more charitable organizations as described in §§ 170(c), 2055(a) and 2522(a) of the United States Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (Title 26 of the United States Code) [26 U.S.C. §§ 170(c), 2055(a) and 2522(a)], or under any similar statute;
(2) A trust created by an employer as part of a stock bonus plan, pension plan, disability or death benefit plan or profit sharing plan for the exclusive benefit of some or all of its employees, to which contributions are made by such employer or employees, or both, for the purpose of distributing to such employees the earnings or the principal, or both earnings and principal, of the fund held in trust;
(3) A statutory trust formed under Chapter 38 of Title 12 for which a certificate of statutory trust is on file in the office of the Secretary of State; or
(4) A trust of real or personal property created for the perpetual care of cemeteries pursuant to the provisions of subchapter IV of Chapter 35 of Title 12.
(c) For purposes of this rule against perpetuities, trusts created by the exercise of a power of appointment, whether nongeneral or general, and whether by will, deed or other instrument, shall be deemed to have become irrevocable by the trustor or testator on the date on which such exercise became irrevocable. Donors, not donees, of nongeneral powers of appointment and donees exercising, not donors of, general powers of appointment, shall be deemed the trustors or testators for purposes of distributions to the trustor's or testator's distributees pursuant to subsection (b) of this section. Notwithstanding the foregoing, in the case of a power of appointment described in § 504 of this title as a "first power," and subject to § 504(a) of this title, trusts created by the exercise of the power of appointment, whether by will, deed or other instrument, shall be deemed to have become irrevocable by the trustor or testator on the date on which the first power was created.
(d) The rule contained in this section is subject to §§ 501 and 502 of this title concerning powers of appointment.
(e) For purposes of this section, real property does not include any intangible personal property such as an interest in a corporation, limited liability company, partnership, statutory trust, business trust or other entity, regardless of whether such entity is the owner of real property or any interest therein. If a trust owns an interest in an entity described in the preceding sentence and the entity is the owner of real property, but the entity ceases to exist so that the trust becomes the owner of any interest in such real property, the trust shall not become void or subject to termination by reason of the common-law rule against perpetuities or other similar rule, and except as otherwise provided in the governing instrument, the trustee may either distribute the interest in real property in accordance with subsection (b) of this section or convey the interest in real property to another such entity in exchange for an interest in the entity to be held as before.
45 Del. Laws, c. 224, § 1; 25 Del. C. 1953, § 503; 65 Del. Laws, c. 422, § 8; 68 Del. Laws, c. 404, § 1; 70 Del. Laws, c. 164, §§ 1-3; 70 Del. Laws, c. 538, § 1; 72 Del. Laws, c. 385, § 1; 72 Del. Laws, c. 397, § 1; 73 Del. Laws, c. 329, §§ 68, 69; 76 Del. Laws, c. 254, § 16; 78 Del. Laws, c. 117, § 18; 79 Del. Laws, c. 352, § 5.;
Disclaimer: These codes may not be the most recent version. Delaware may have more current or accurate information. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site or the information linked to on the state site. Please check official sources.