Albert C. Barnes Barnes, Philadelphia, Barnes Foundation discussed on Dead Celebrity
With complex issues of gift estate entrusted taxation. Jackie also has a strong background in international state planning factor compliance and pre immigration tax. Planning thanks for joining us. Jackie Dave Bahir subjective. Today's episode is Albert C. Barnes Barnes was an American businessman best known for his massively valuable collection that he devoted most of his life to curate the nine hundred piece collection which was worth some twenty five billion dollars featured one hundred eighty-one in-laws sixty nine says on sixty matisses. Forty four Picassos and fourteen Medaglia Ottis to just give a few highlights. Barnes intensely disliked the elite Air quotes of the art world and negated his life to providing education to less fortunate. You defied convention by grouping is our peace based on aesthetics philosophical reasons instead of artists are period Andrea. Matisse said the foundation is the only place to see Harken America Dr Barnes never had children but he took great care to plan for his legacy in one thousand nine hundred eighty two created a title. Trust agreement call the trust indenture. This trust established the Barnes Foundation a charitable organization to manage his art gallery as an educational institution in Lower Merion Pennsylvania. And if that name sounds familiar. That's because it's where Kobe Bryant is cool his lengthen. These documents that was not be sold moved placed on tour or even rearranged within the gallery itself. He wanted used primarily for education but open for the public on a very limited basis. He restricted how it could be viewed when only one day a week usually and how much could be charged to see the restrictions also made it very difficult for the board of to keep the foundation profitable or at least that's what they climbed so little by little a filed corpse-eating asking for permission to change the trust. Provisions Trustees engaged in expensive litigation in court arguing that the terms of Dr Barnes's trust impossible because of the great costs needed to maintain the collection and the final blow. Came in two thousand four when a judge ruled that the Barnes Foundation which now supported by three wealthy and elite Charles Foundations and the Pennsylvania attorney general can move the entire collection to the museum district or Downtime Philadelphia right next door to the Philadelphia Museum of art for context of House offices. Barnes had once said the Philadelphia Museum of art is a house of artistic and intellectual prostitution so safe to say probably not what he wanted. So how could he wishes have been so blatantly disregarded or because of a doctrine of deviation which is a legal principle that allows court effectively rewrite a charitable trust if the purpose becomes impossible to maintain without changes. The trustees argued that there was no financially viable way to keep the art of the building. Dr Bars created for the collection could only be maintained. You'd by permitting the move and I'm sure. The allure of creating a huge tourist attraction by relocating at twenty five billion dollar Philadelphia certainly offered no motivation at all. Now there's more twisters to this story which inspired the excellent documentary the auto steel. And we're not gonNA cover them here. Our focus was just how surprisingly easy. It is to have estate planning documents and wills in particular modified overturned. So Jackie how worried should clients be about how close to the letter? Their estate putting documents will be enforced after they're gone if someone just leaves a will and everything's going outright to their beneficiaries. I think that clients can essentially rest assured as long as they've picked a a trustworthy executor that their wishes are going to be carried out. Same thing with a shorter term trust for beneficiaries. For example. You might leave your child or a younger person Entrust to a certain age. I think that you can probably guarantee who the trustee is going to be or who the trustee and potential successor will be so that you can have pretty good control over these dispositions link where clients do have to worry is especially in this area with long-term charitable dispositions. You have certain people that you're going to put in charge right after your death. Almost a hundred years later you might have an entirely different board running the organization. Different Trustees of a trust and then your vision can start to go awry if you haven't done some really careful planning. What's the difference in this situation between the will and trust and what those different instruments are supposed to do and of what they can do? They can be quite similar documents depending on the type of woman type of trust here we. In the case of Barnes we would have a a well with which essentially disposes of your estate at your death and then we have this trust which established his foundation ultimately to hold this art and carry on this educational mission. This charitable mission rather than necessarily run art museum so that's very different and also obviously Your estate isn't going to last forever. The idea is to administer an estate and have it wrapped up within a year or a few years. This other plan in which the arch foundation was held was mental last. Ideally in perpetuity are as long as possible. And I think that we should talk a little bit more about the doctrine of deviation to and how that's brought us to where we are today in terms of how have you made your wishes known to your fiduciaries how major wishes known your executor if you have a will and how have you made your wishes known to trustees if you have a trust or how we made wishes known to Charitable Corporation. That's going to continue beyond your debt. Obviously some methods making your wishes known or not going to be ultimately legally enforceable when they applied the doctrine of deviation to barnes they essentially were trying to anticipate how could most closely meet. Barnes is desired end. When circumstances changed so I think that something. That's it's important to talk to clients about is what's your ultimate goal and get that in writing. Even if it's not legally enforceable I think if Barnes have been consulted on this and someone had said well it's down to this re they're gonNA move your entire collection right next door to the Philadelphia. Museum are moving out of the suburban setting that you chose change. The way to the artwork is presented from what you designed to something that's perhaps and more accommodating to the General Public. Would you rather have moved? And your vision changed in that way or would you rather sell. Certain pieces certainly arguable. That might have said sell certain pieces or we might have come up with a different way to raise funds to keep the off foundation operating as it was one of the difficulties. When you're dealing with these plans that are intended to last in perpetuity. Right is that that's impossible along the way and you have to anticipate not just through the various scenarios that could occur over the ensuing rest of time but also the legal changes that are and all that stuff is just impossible for an estate plan to like completely for. See it in any way how good you are all. That's kind of why it's best to sort of building at certain points. Some safe spots here where where things can transfer or where where things can change a little bit in some flexibility. Because you know the only fact that you know is that things will change. You have no idea what the changes are going to be necessarily. Yeah in hindsight is twenty twenty but I think that if I were assisting with creating this plan I might ask those questions. If you're endowment runs low in years what changes would you be most okay with if changes had to be made because we never know even if someone gets a hundred million dollar endowment today the market crash could be invested in something that seems really safe at suddenly becomes unsafe or sometimes organizations are even victim of produce aries? Obviously we don't see that very often but it does happen. So how are we going to necessarily plan for all contingencies? That can happen there including running out of money to keep the operation going until depicted the night honestly in this situation despite what I just said. It's kind of the most obvious question right pure album. Barnes's stay planner and he's putting all these rules saying people can come in once a week and it can only be X. People at once and you can only charge this or it's just simple math. Look at and be like well. Rent costs this much to say like a house. It's going to work out. And would Albert Barnes of preferred to allow more people in at a time or preferred to have partnered perhaps with the city of Philadelphia or even with Philadelphia Museum of art to transport people easily from Philadelphia to Marion in that suburb where he was located rather than have the artwork moved. I think people describe Albert Barnes being someone who got what he wanted and who might not have been particularly open to hearing different perspectives. But I think that this is the kind of thing where if someone brought in this concept for an estate plan. You'd have to push back if the individual wasn't willing to sort of look at the different contingencies and plan for them and I think that you know now we have the example of Albert Barnes if someone doesn't WanNa plan for different contingencies. We can say okay but if these unforeseen things happen we want to know. We most like your opinion on what should happen because that can be instructive for how changes should be made. And if you don't provide it you're leaving it up to the court and you're leaving it up to whoever might be in charge of these assets or your plan to one hundred years after death. And that's probably someone who has no personal connection with you concede the Barnes case the smallest possible genuine to the most closely adhering to your wishes can be nowhere near what his wishes clearly would have been right out in. My last possible thing you to do was hurt. His Art to go to this autumn quote elites in the Philadelphia Museum. It's also possible. That was the best way to do it now. You know it's sort of a a weird situation. Where even sometimes the closest possible best solution can be the last thing that person would want if they haven't specified right exactly. I mean he might have wanted everything to be sold and wound down if it got to this point. But we'll never know because obviously it wasn't anticipated the endowment would deplete to the point that they were in grave financial trouble but these are the kind of questions that we need to think of as a state planners. And that's why we why we study things that's why we read case law. People might not have been as aware of these problems back in nineteen twenty two or back. No one this estate plan was initially created but we have the benefit of an extra hundred or so years of history to guide us in making a state clowns. Obviously don't think that most of our listeners have clients with twenty five billion dollars collections. That they're gonNA have to worry about this about unless you do. In which case awesome. Why the Hell you listening to me? You know. I think this concept of what porn was doing this idea of dead hand control and sort of the risks inherent in that and the natural idea that sort of the natural tendency toward of powerful people to want to do that is something that can be instructive for all advisors regardless whether working on estate planning on vacuum. I'm just talking about the dead hand a little bit with that. Mean a good way to phrase it. It's essentially trying to control beyond your death. What happens to your assets as we discussed at the beginning of this podcast? It works best for a shorter amount of time in the longer. It's been since your death the harder it can be. For example sometimes clients will want a particular financial firm or financial advisor to be working on their assets. That usually works fine. If it's just going to be your estate but if you have perhaps a lengthy trust and you might not even think you have a lengthy trust. You mentioned that most listeners probably don't have huge art collections to dispose of. But if you have younger people in your life either. Children Nieces and nephews. Whoever even the children of family friends? Who might be inheriting from you? You have to anticipate that if these kids are three years old today you might be putting something in your estate plan that has assets in them for trust until they're thirty five forty so that's going to be a fairly lengthy amount of time and if you're restricting to certain financial advisers. We don't know what could happen with that. For example people retire financial firms emerge and go under and it might not be clear what to do in those situations so I do try to draft with a certain amount of flexibility to.