In re Trust Created by Phyllis L. Haberman. George Haberman, appellant,
Mary Lou Haberman et al., appellees.
Trusts: Equity: Appeal and Error. Absent an equity question,
an appellate court reviews trust administration matters for
error appearing on the record; but where an equity question
is presented, appellate review of that issue is de novo on
Trusts. Under Neb. Rev. Stat. § 30-3855(a) (Cum. Supp.
2014), while a trust is revocable, rights of the
beneficiaries are subject to the control of the settlor.
The settlor of a written revocable trust may revoke or amend
the trust by substantial compliance with a method provided in
the terms of the trust.
The amendment of a revocable trust terminating a
beneficiary's interest in the trust property invalidates
any earlier agreements that the beneficiary may have entered
into with respect to the beneficiary's interest in the
Judgments: Appeal and Error. Where the record adequately
demonstrates that the decision of the trial court is correct,
although such correctness is based on a ground or reason
different from that assigned by the trial court, an appellate
court will affirm.
Appeal and Error. An appellate court is not obligated to
engage in an analysis that is not necessary to adjudicate the
case and controversy before it.
from the County Court for Adams County: Robert A. Ide, Judge,
V. Drew, of Drew Law Firm, P.C., L.L.O., for appellant.
Neb.App. 360] Daniel E. Klaus, Rembolt Ludtke, L.L.P., for
Chief Judge, and Inbody and Pirtle, Judges.
case concerns the disposition of the property contained in
the Phyllis L. Haberman Revocable Trust following the death
of the trust's settlor, Phyllis L. Haberman. George
Haberman, one of Phyllis' sons, contends that he is
entitled to a portion of the trust property despite an
amendment to the trust excluding George as a beneficiary.
George argues that an earlier agreement between himself, the
trust, and his siblings-Phillip Haberman, Rex S. Haberman II,
and Mary Lou Haberman- should govern the current disposition
of the trust corpus. Upon our review, we affirm the county
court's decision holding that George is not entitled to a
portion of the trust property.
created the revocable trust at issue in this case in 1996.
The trust corpus consisted primarily of land interests held
by the family company, R and P Limited Partnership (R and P),
and additional property which was separately owned by Phyllis
and her spouse.
1996 trust agreement named as its beneficiaries Phyllis;
Phyllis' four children-George, Phillip, Rex, and Mary
Lou; and Phyllis' husband who predeceased her and who is
not a part of the present dispute. The trust provided that
upon the death of Phyllis and her spouse, George, Phillip,
and Mary Lou would each receive equal shares of R and P, and
Rex would receive parcels of real estate located in Kimball
County, Nebraska. Any remaining trust assets were to be
equally divided among the four siblings.
declaration of trust document also provided that the trust
could be amended or revoked as follows:
GRANTOR specifically reserves the following rights during
[24 Neb.App. 361] . . . To remove the TRUSTEE and appoint a
successor and to modify or alter this Declaration of Trust in
whole or in part by an instrument in writing signed by
GRANTOR and delivered to the TRUSTEE or to revoke this trust