May 14, 2020

Commercial Trusts

Commercial Trusts

Commercial Trusts as Business Organizations: Unraveling the Mystery
     Steven L. Schwarcz, 58(2): 559 (Feb. 2003)
Although the law focuses almost exclusively on gratuitous trusts, the increasingly dominant use of trusts is for securitization and other distinctly nongratuitous commercial transactions. This shift has occurred without a systematic understanding of whether commercial trusts are a better form of business organization than traditional alternatives, such as corporations. Furthermore, few have even considered whether existing trust law is adequate to govern commercial trusts. This Article builds an analytical framework in which to attempt to examine these issues. In that context, it argues that commercial trusts and corporations can be viewed as mirror-image entities that respond to different investor needs.

The Uniform Statutory Trust Entity Act: A Review
     Thomas E. Rutledge and Ellisa O. Habbart, 65(4): 1055–1104 (August 2010)
The Uniform Statutory Trust Entity Act, the most recent product of the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws in the area of business entity legislation, is intended to render uniform the statutory (i.e., "business") trust across the various states. Currently, business trust legislation is widely disparate across the various states, and many of the existing statutes are at best skeletal. This Act has the objective of rendering the business trust more effective as a form of organization by addressing many issues that are typically seen in other business entity laws, while at the same time seeking to minimize both unexpected and, in certain places, undesirable results otherwise dictated by applicable trust law. This Article both reviews the workings of this new uniform act and identifies issues and deficiencies therein.