Cy Pres Doctrine


DEFINITION of 'Cy Pres Doctrine'

Cy Pres represents a legal concept that gives courts the power to interpret the terms of a will or gift. This is done if the terms of the document cannot be carried out or legitimately, interpreted literally or performed legally. Cy Pres Doctrine provides the court with flexibility to interpret the perceived intent of the donor or testator, and implement its wishes.

BREAKING DOWN 'Cy Pres Doctrine'

An old French phrase, "cy pres comme possible," means, "as near as possible." Cy pres allows the wishes of donors or testators to be carried out in many cases. If it were not for this power, there would be instances in which the phrasing in the document would make it null and void legally, and thus impossible to implement.

  1. Trust

    A fiduciary relationship in which one party, known as a trustor, ...
  2. Gift

    Property, money or assets that one person transfers to another ...
  3. Will

    A legally enforceable declaration of how a person wishes his ...
  4. Taxes

    An involuntary fee levied on corporations or individuals that ...
  5. Fiduciary

    A fiduciary is a person who acts on behalf of another person, ...
  6. Letter of Intent - LOI

    A document outlining the terms of an agreement before it is finalized. ...
Related Articles
  1. Options & Futures

    Getting Started On Your Estate Plan

    With some preparation, you can save your heirs from paying a hefty estate tax. Here are some tips.
  2. Options & Futures

    Three Documents You Shouldn't Do Without

    Estate planning is not just about the division of assets after you die. Read on to save your loved ones extra grief.
  3. Personal Finance

    Get Ready For The Estate Tax Phase-Out

    Changes to federal legislation will affect how your assets are treated once you're gone - be prepared.
  4. Investing Basics

    Do You Need More Than One Financial Advisor?

    Using more than one financial advisor for money management has its pros and cons.
  5. Insurance

    Cashing in Your Life Insurance Policy

    Tough times call for desperate measures, but is raiding your life insurance policy even worth considering?
  6. Savings

    How To Set Up A Trust Fund If You're Not Rich

    You don't need to be worth millions to create your own trust fund. Learn how your money can be handled in the event of your death.
  7. Financial Advisors

    Passing an IRA to a Trust: The Good and Bad

    Creating a trust is a common estate planning tactic, but naming a beneficiary to an IRA to a trust may have unintended consequences.
  8. Investing

    How the Rothschild Family Created Their Wealth

    An overview of how the Rothschild dynasty became one of the most powerful families in the world.
  9. Retirement

    5 Reasons Retirees Are Upsizing Instead of Downsizing Their Homes

    Many retirees opt to downsize to save money, but there are many who are doing the opposite and upsizing.
  10. Professionals

    How Income-Shifting Strategies Can Help Cut Taxes

    There are many ways that your clients can move money or other assets to relatives in order to reduce their tax bills. Here's a primer on best practices.
  1. Can personal loans be included in bankruptcy?

    Personal loans from friends, family and employers fall under common categories of debt that can be discharged in the case ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. How much money does Texas make from unclaimed property each year?

    In 2014, the office of the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts reported $234 million in unclaimed property claimant liabilities, ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. How much money does Michigan make from unclaimed property each year?

    According to the 2013-2014 Annual Report of the State Treasurer, the state of Michigan earned only $82,875 in abandoned and ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. Who decides if a financial security should be escheated?

    There is no one entity who "decides" to escheat assets. Rather, financial institutions are required to report inactive accounts ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What causes a stock account to be escheated?

    Your state government may be able to escheat your stock account or another financial asset if the account or asset is deemed ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. Are 401(k) accounts escheatable?

    Typically, 401(k) plans are not subject to state escheatment laws because they are covered under the Employee Retirement ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Take A Bath

    A slang term referring to the situation of an investor who has experienced a large loss from an investment or speculative ...
  2. Black Friday

    1. A day of stock market catastrophe. Originally, September 24, 1869, was deemed Black Friday. The crash was sparked by gold ...
  3. Turkey

    Slang for an investment that yields disappointing results or turns out worse than expected. Failed business deals, securities ...
  4. Barefoot Pilgrim

    A slang term for an unsophisticated investor who loses all of his or her wealth by trading equities in the stock market. ...
  5. Quick Ratio

    The quick ratio is an indicator of a company’s short-term liquidity. The quick ratio measures a company’s ability to meet ...
  6. Black Tuesday

    October 29, 1929, when the DJIA fell 12% - one of the largest one-day drops in stock market history. More than 16 million ...
Trading Center