Gibson v. Bankofier

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Trusts and Estates
  • Date Filed: 12-09-2015
  • Case #: A153425
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Sercombe, P.J. for the Court; Hadlock, J.; & Tookey, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

To survive summary judgment in proving financial abuse of a vulnerable person under ORS 124.110(1)(a), a plaintiff must show facts to prove that defendant wrongfully took or appropriated money or property from a vulnerable person.

Plaintiff (Gibson) was the successor of a trust established by her mother (Mother) and maintained for the benefit of Gibson's family. When Mother was the trustee, she purchased three properties for investment purposes. The purchase was facilitated by Defendants. However, the investments did not improve in value, and the value of the trust diminished significantly. As successor to the trust, Gibson sought an action against Defendants, premised on the theory that (1) Defendants had committed financial abuse against Mother, a vulnerable person, under ORS 124.100 & 124.110; and (2) Defendants had a special relationship with Mother and were negligent, causing financial harm. The trial court dismissed the action on summary judgment, and Gibson appealed. The Court held that Gibson had failed to provide evidence that Defendants had acted wrongfully as required by ORS 124.110(1)(a), and based on the facts as pleaded, no reasonable juror could agree that Defendants had committed financial abuse against Mother. Further, the Court held that there was no evidence that Defendants had breached their duty as real estate agent or investment manager, and therefore there was no evidence supporting an action for negligent breach of a special relationship. Affirmed.

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