An Inland lawmaker’s bill on its way to the governor’s desk would include trust instruments as an agreement covered under the “parol evidence” rule. Current law already protects deeds, wills and...
contracts against contradicting oral agreements or earlier settlements. The bill by Assemblyman Brian Jones, R-Santee would add deeds of trust to the list.
“It is completely logical and good policy for trust instruments to be included within the parol evidence rule,” Jones, who represents part of Riverside County, said in the analysis of the bill. “Courts have recognized this fact, and there is an abundance of case law holding that trust instruments are indeed within the rule’s scope.”
Larry Doyle, the lobbyist for the bill’s sponsor — the Conference of California Bar Associations — says that the current law needs to be updated.
“Unfortunately, what happens is that new lawyers will see that trust instruments aren’t included and try to take advantage of that,” Doyle said. “It doesn’t happen all that often, but it happens often enough to where I think the current law needs to be cleaned up a little bit.”
The bill passed the Senate and the Assembly unanimously.