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West's Wisconsin Statutes Annotated. Property. Chapter 701. Trusts. 701.11. Honorary trusts; cemetery trusts.

Statute Details
Printable Version
Citation: W. S. A. 701.11

Citation: WI ST 701.11

Last Checked by Web Center Staff: 10/2013

Summary:   This statute represents Wisconsin's pet trust law.  While not a specific pet trust law, Wisconsin's law states that a settlor may form a general honorary trust with no ascertainable human beneficiary provided it is not for a "capricious purpose."

Statute in Full:


(1) Except under sub. (2), where the owner of property makes a testamentary transfer in trust for a specific noncharitable purpose, and there is no definite or definitely ascertainable human beneficiary designated, no enforceable trust is created; but the transferee has power to apply the property to the designated purpose, unless the purpose is capricious. If the transferee refuses or neglects to apply the property to the designated purpose within a reasonable time and the transferor has not manifested an intention to make a beneficial gift to the transferee, a resulting trust arises in favor of the transferor's estate and the court is authorized to order the transferee to retransfer the property.

(2) A trust may be created for maintaining, keeping in repair and preserving any grave, tomb, monument, gravestone or any cemetery. Any cemetery company, association or corporation may receive property in trust for any of those purposes and apply the income from the trust to the purpose stated in the creating instrument.


(a) A trust described in sub. (2) is invalid to the extent it was created for a capricious purpose or the purpose becomes capricious.

(b) If the assets of any trust described in sub. (2) are valued at less than $5,000 and the court finds that the cost of operating the trust will probably defeat the intent of the settlor or if the trustee, including a cemetery company, association or corporation, named in the creating instrument is improperly described, the court may order distribution of the assets on terms which will as nearly as possible carry out the settlor's intention.

<<For credits, see Historical Note field.>>

COMMENTS--L.1969, C. 283, § 17

2001 Main Volume

This replaces present s. 231.11(6) and, as to cemetery trusts, s. 323.025.


2001 Main Volume

L.1969, c. 283, § 17, eff. July 1, 1971.
1989 Act 307, § 99, eff. Nov. 1, 1991.

Prior Laws:

R.S.1849, c. 57, § 11.
R.S.1858, c. 84, § 11.
R.S.1878, § 2801.
L.1883, c. 290.
L.1887, c. 388.
Ann.St.1889, § 2081.
St.1898, 2081.
L.1917, c. 170.
L.1925, c. 4.
St.1925, § 231.11.
L.1933, c. 413.
L.1935, c. 336.
L.1943, c. 93.
L.1955, c. 161.
St.1955, § 323.025.
L.1963, c. 165.
St.1967, §§ 231.11(6), 323.025.

1989 Act 307, § 99 amended subsec. (2).

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