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Scotts v. Metcalf Charitable Trust

Scotts v. Metcalf Charitable Trust, 2015 MT 265 (Sept. 8, 2015) (Wheat, J.), (5-0, aff’d)

Issue: (1) Whether the Trust could enforce the Metcalf Restrictions against the Scotts; (2) Whether the Metcalf Restrictions were enforceable as anything other than a conservation easement; (3) whether the Metcalf Restrictions are void under the rule against perpetuities; (4) whether the district curt correctly held that the Metcalf Restrictions were not void for vagueness.

Short Answer: (1) Yes; (2) yes; (3) no; and (4) the Court declines to address this as a nonjusticiable controversy.


Facts: In January 1996, Donna Metcalf transferred a 40-acre parcel of land to Richard Thieltges by warranty deed. The deed included certain “covenants, restrictions, conditions and charges,” referred to as the Metcalf Restrictions.…