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Tylor to promote new finance product

Monday 22 August 2022 | Written by Supplied | Published in Economy, National

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Tylor to promote new finance product
Lawyer Reuben Tylor. Photo: CI NEWS/21121527

Rarotonga lawyer Reuben Tylor will be promoting Cook Islands’ newest international finance product on the market, the International Relationship Property Trust (IRPT), in an event in Singapore.

Tylor will be speaking at a panel session at the STEP Asia Conference to be held from November 15-16, on the topic of divorce where he will be talking about the IRPT.

Tylor was the developer of the Cook Islands International Relationship Property Trust which was launched in December 2021. The IRPT is a new way for couples to manage their assets in the event that they separate or divorce.

Cook Islands Finance, the statutory body established to develop and promote the Cook Islands financial services industry, ​is the bronze sponsor of the conference.

In a Question and Answer session with Marie Francis, chief executive of Cook Islands Finance, Tylor said: “The problem I saw was that matrimonial courts keep expanding the grounds for bringing trust assets within their jurisdiction, as well as applying the principles of dividing and distribution of those trust assets irrespective of the proper administration of a trust.”

Trust law was simply not keeping up with developments in matrimonial property law, let alone the increase in the divorce rate, Tylor explained.

He said there was a need to bolster trust law to empower couples to decide how their assets might be treated in the event they separated at some time in the future.

“This product requires people to spend more time on asset planning before they get married - do you think that this is realistic? I think that when individuals and couples are making plans for their future and there are considerable assets and children involved that it is more becoming more common to spend time on asset planning before formalising a relationship.

“An advantage of an IRPT is that it can be established at any time during a relationship, not necessarily just before a marriage/civil union.”

The IRPT is a tool that is available to people from any jurisdiction but in particular it will appeal to those who are from jurisdictions where courts force division and distribution of matrimonial property upon divorce, says Tylor.

“The process is relatively straightforward to those who are familiar with establishing a trust. The IRPT Act 2021 does provide for specific requirements such as: that the settlors are in a relationship at the time the trust is settled, each settlor has received separate independent legal advice and has made a full disclosure to the other of property, income and liabilities and the deed must include a ‘relationship agreement’. Further specifics of these requirements are provided in the Act.”

Reuben founded Southpac Trust Company Ltd in 1983, and Cook Islands Trust Corporation in 1998, both as 50 per cent shareholder. Since 1987, he has been principally engaged in providing legal services to offshore industry. He is now founder of Trustees & Fiduciaries (Cook Islands) Ltd since 2015.