When the Missouri Legislature adopted Missouri Revised Statute section 456.590.2, empowering courts to allow deviation from the distributive terms of a trust, the intent was to repeal, in part at least, the long-standing Claflin doctrine. That doctrine is a common law rule that refuses to allow deviation from the terms of the trust, even when all beneficiaries consent, if variation or termination would violate the purpose of the trust. This Note analyzes the recent application of Missouri's new trust variation statute and addresses the interpretive issues that Hamerstrom settles. The Note briefly discusses the history of the Claflin doctrine and its adoption in the majority of American jurisdictions to provide a better understanding of the implications of the change in Missouri's approach to "dead hand" control.

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