As a result of marital problems, Howard R. Bankerd “left for the west,” and Virginia Bankerd, his wife, continued to reside in their jointly owned home. Before his departure, Howard executed a power of attorney to Arthur V. King, which authorized King to “ convey, grant, bargain, and/ or sell” Howard’s interest in the property. For the ensuing decade, Howard lived in various locations in Nevada, Colorado, and Washington but rarely contacted King. Howard made no payments on the mortgage, for taxes, or for maintenance or upkeep of the home.
Nine years later, Virginia, who was nearing retirement, requested King to exercise his power of attorney and transfer Howard’s interest in the home to her. King’s attempts to locate Howard were unsuccessful. He believed that Howard, who would then be 69 years of age, might be dead. King gifted Howard’s interest in the property to Virginia, who sold the property for $ 62,500. Four years later, Howard returned and filed suit against King, alleging breach of trust and fiduciary duty. Is King liable? King v. Bankerd, 492 A. 2d 608, 1985 Md. Lexis 589 (Court of Appeals of Maryland)

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