DOCVIT NEWS | The high-level talks between Lawyer Zhang Ting, the Director of Internal Legal Service, and Professor Graham Virgo, Senior Vice President of Cambridge University

Source: Beijing DOCVIT Law Firm  Time: 2019-03-15 16:32:58  Author: Beijing DOCVIT Law Firm

On March 14, 2019, Lawyer Zhang Ting, the Director of Internal Legal Service of Beijing Docvit Law Firm, met with Senior Vice President of Cambridge University and Professor of British Private Law, Professor Graham Virgo. They further discussed the results of the English papers by Zhang Ting as a visiting scholar during the Cambridge study, "Comparative Study of the Sino-British Trust Law and Its Impact on the Development of Family Offices." At the same time, Professor Virgo also presented his work to Zhang Ting.

Professor Graham Virgo

Professor Graham Virgo is a world-renowned expert in trust law. The textbooks of trust law at Oxford University and Cambridge University in the UK are edited by him and influenced the development of many theories of Anglo-American Trust. In addition, Professor Virgo has conducted in-depth research in the fields of contract law, securities law and criminal law. His major works are: The Principles of Equity & Trusts, The Principles of the Law of Restitution, Equity and Trusts: Cases and Materials. During her visit to Cambridge University, Lawyer Zhang Ting repeatedly communicated with Professor Virgo to discuss how family trusts are implemented in China.

According to relevant research data, as of the end of 2018, the total amount of investable assets held by individuals across the country has reached 112 trillion yuan, and the number of high-net-worth individuals with Chinese personal investable assets of more than 10 million yuan has exceeded 1 million. During the two sessions this year, Huang Kuang, a member of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, proposed that "the establishment of a family trust system in China is of great practical significance in suppressing the outflow of national wealth, maintaining social stability, promoting family harmony, and ensuring market development." At the same time, Commissioner Huang Wei also pointed out that "the demand for family trusts has already appeared in practice, but China's current 'trust law' only regulates commercial trusts, does not make provisions for civil trusts, and is not applicable to A family trust belonging to a civil trust."

Regarding the disconnection between legislation and practical needs, Zhang Ting advised the introduction of the relevant concepts and systems of civil trust in the UK Trust Law. The introduction of this system is of great significance to the development of family offices and charitable trusts. First of all, Zhang Ting has studied the legislative obstacles to the introduction of civil trust system in China's legislation, and expressed concern about the "dual ownership" problem of solving disputes between the theoretical and practical circles from the legislative level. Secondly, Zhang Ting proposes to further improve the definition of “trust” in the Trust Law on the basis of current legislation to clarify the legal ownership of trust property and introduce some concepts in the British equity law to further promote the development of China's trust law practice. Relax the requirements of the trust form to increase the flexibility and confidentiality of the trust in practice, and further clarify and refine the trustee's responsibility to protect the interests of the trustee. In addition, Zhang Ting also proposed to amend other surrounding supporting laws to cope with the establishment of civil trust systems, such as marriage law, inheritance law, insurance law, charity law and tax law.

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