Melania and Donald are Business Partners and Own BeBest Buggies
Melania and Donald are business partners and own BeBest Buggies. BeBest sells golf equipment and offers personal golf tuition. They established their large and ostentatious shop in Double Bay, Sydney ten years ago. Donald takes care of the sales part of the business. Melania just doesn’t really care about golf equipment but provides individualized coaching and nutritional advice to wealthy retired women who compete in local golf tournaments. In the window of the shop, there is a large sign that reads, “We buy second-hand golf buggies!” Donald, in his spare time, reconditions used golf buggies and sells them at a profit.
BeBest initially employed Eric as a junior shop assistant when the business was first established. However having nearly completed an online management degree at Covfefe University, he has been given more responsibility and undertakes the day-to-day running of the business, including updating client information.
In January this year, Barron came into the shop wanting to sell a used golf buggy, the ElectriK Mar-a-Lago 2000. Donald haggled with Barron on the price, and Donald eventually paid Barron $500. That evening, Donald’s very wealthy girlfriend Gale Spaniels visited him and immediately recognized the Electrik Mar-a-Lago 2000 as a collector’s piece. She suggested to Donald that he keep the purchase a secret from Melania, recondition the buggy and sell if for a huge profit. Gale said she could arrange a buyer. Donald took Gale’s advice and eventually sold the buggy for $8,000 to the buyer Gale provided. With the proceeds, he bought Gale a beautiful sapphire ring for $5000. The remaining $3000 he deposited into his account, which was $3000 overdrawn.
Eric in the meantime has been busy at BeBest. Several months ago he was tasked with negotiating, on behalf of BeBest, a lease for new premises in the CBD. During one meeting, an agent of Pencefield Mall passed Eric a brown envelope containing $20,000 saying “This is the best deal you’ll get”. Eric accepted the envelope and agreed on behalf of BeBest to lease the retail space at Pencefield Mall. The lease was in fact at market value. Eric quickly invested the money in the stock market.
Buoyed by his success Eric, suggested to his sister Ivanka, that they create an online business selling nutritional supplements. With his access to BeBest’s client records, he was able to download the personal information Melania kept concerning her client's training regimes. Eric explained to Ivanka they would use the information to target specific clients with their marketing.
Melania, long suspecting Donald and Eric were not entirely honest with her, has had a private detective investigate their business dealings, and now knows everything. Gale broke up with Donald and sold the ring on eBay for $6000. The stock market is booming and Eric’s share portfolio is worth $50,000. Eric and Ivanka are about to begin their targeted marketing for the nutritional supplement business.
After learning of the above events, Melania decided to go on a long holiday and wanted to draft her will before she left. In her will she proposes to allow trustees absolute discretion to distribute $100,000 to any of her relatives or friends, provided they have never married into Donald’s family, or have been involved in any business dealings with him. The residue of her estate is to be used to promote the game of golf in schools in the Eastern suburbs of Sydney.
Melania seeks your advice as to any rights or claim she has in equity against Donald, Eric, Gale, and Ivanka, and to the validity of her will.
*Students are only to apply law covered in Equity and Trusts, and not to consider other areas, such as Australian Consumer law. *
Intention is a crucial element in many areas of equity and trust. In Trident General Insurance Co Ltd v McNiece Brothers Pty Ltd  HCA 44, Mason CJ and Wilson J stated:
[t]he courts will recognize the existence of trust when it appears from the language of the parties, construed in its context, including the matrix of circumstances, that the parties so intended. We are speaking of express trusts, the existence of which depends on intention.
Critically discuss the role intention plays in equity and/or trusts.
In your answer, you may refer to one or any number of areas you have studied, including if you wish, but not confined to express trust.
Referencing Styles: AGLC
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