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411 A.2d 16

Cyber Law- Boyd 2.doc

Botticello v. Stefanovicz
411 A.2d 16
Danielle Boyd

FACTS:

Walter and Mary tenants in common, Mary refuses to sell for under $85K, plaintiff never does title search, Walter handles all the business, sells, third pary seeking easement, Mary’s co-ownership emerges, she says not responsible for relief (Plaintiff made several improvements), Plaintiff said Walt acted as her agent, court says yes, this court says NO, because underlying facts and applicable law do not support the court’s conclusion of agency.

ANALYSIS:

Defines Agency
3 Elements Required for Agency
  • Burden of Proof: Marital relationship does not prove the agency relationship, nor do the fact the defendants held the land jointly.

1) Walter handled all the business aspects, taxes insurance and mortgage, but just because one spouse tends more to business matteres doesn’t constitute delegation of power as to an agent especially because Walter had never signed anything as Mary’s agent before.
2) A statement she wouldn’t sell for less, doesn’t mean she agreed to sale for that amount
3) Plaintiff claims Mary is bound by conduct, trial court agreed, THIS COURT SAYS NO, no support of ratification nor established knowledge of all the material circumstances surrounding the deal.
a. Walter had right to lease his half, and just because someone improving and living on property doesn’t manifest Mary’s ratification by failing to repudiate or not accept payments
b. Just because rent was used for family purposes doesn’t mean Mary ratified.

Held: Reversed in part, affirmed in part, remanded for relief

LAW

Ratification: Restatement, 1 Agency Section 82:
- Affirmance by a person of a prior act which did not bind him but which was done or professedly done on his account with full knowledge of all material circumstances.
o Receipt of benefits may constitute ratification but only if the other elements are present as well.

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106 Cyber Law- Boyd 2.doc DanielleBoyd Fri 24 of Apr, 2009 06:03 GMT 26.00 Kb 2132
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