Vanderbilt Law Review


W. Barton Leach

First Page



The standard doctrine has been that where an interest may vest too remotely the entire interest is stricken down; and this destructiveness is multiplied by the all-or-nothing rule of Leake v. Robinson which declares that the invalidity of a gift to any member of a class invalidates the gifts of all other members. It is the thesis of this paper that the penalty for violation of the Rule--a penalty inflicted, not on the violator, but on his or her intended beneficiaries, usually minors or unborns--should be, not the invalidation of the future interest, but rather a tailoring of the interest on the principle of cy pres or approximation so that the general intention of the settlor or testator is carried out so far as possible within the limits of the Rule. Furthermore, I believe it is demonstrable that this thesis is gaining acceptance in the courts and the legislatures to the point where the time may be approaching when the enormous destructiveness of the Rule Against Perpetuities will be a thing of the past.