French v. Wachovia Bank, N.A.

Federal 7th Circuit Court
Civil Court
Case Number: 
Nos. 11-2781 & 11-3437 Cons.
Decision Date: 
July 17, 2013
Federal District: 
E.D. Wisc.
Dist. Ct. did not err in granting defendant-trustee’s motion for summary judgment in action under Wisconsin law alleging that defendant breached its duty of loyalty to plaintiffs-beneficiaries of said trust by reinvesting trust assets, i.e., two life insurance policies, by using trustee’s insurance affiliate that resulted in affiliate obtaining large commission. Instant trust document contained express conflict-of-interest waiver that overrode any common-law prohibition against self-dealing by defendant. Moreover, plaintiffs failed to produce evidence of bad faith where defendant’s reinvestment of insurance policies was prudent since instant reinvestment resulted in trust saving $620,000 in premium costs while maintaining same amount of insurance coverage.