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59-1704. Liability for conversion. If any person embezzles or converts to his or her own use any of the personal property of a decedent or conservatee, such person shall be liable for double the value of the property so embezzled or converted.

History: L. 1939, ch. 180, § 134; L. 1965, ch. 346, § 17; January 1, 1966.

Source or prior law:

22-912.

CASE ANNOTATIONS

1. Section is of an exemplary character; surety not liable for payment of double value of property converted by principal. Koch v. Merchants Mutual Bonding Co., 211 K. 397, 398, 399, 401, 402, 403, 507 P.2d 189.

2. Purpose of statute is to punish fiduciary and warn others; penalty imposed regardless of professed good faith. In re Estate of Engels, 10 K.A.2d 103, 107, 692 P.2d 400 (1984).

3. Cited; liability of bank for misappropriation of deposits by a fiduciary discussed in depth. Hubbard v. Home Fed'l Savings & Loan Ass'n, 10 K.A.2d 547, 551, 704 P.2d 399 (1985).

4. Cited; liability of surety on administrator's bond for assets converted before issuing bond or appointment of administrator examined. Martin v. Hanschu, 241 K. 521, 522, 738 P.2d 96 (1987).

5. Penalty provisions herein are mandatory, regardless of conservator's putative good faith and innocence of undue influence, fraud, coercion or duress. In re Conservatorship of Marcotte, 243 K. 190, 194, 195, 756 P.2d 1091 (1988).

6. Discussion of trust funds as personal property of decedent. In re trusteeship of McDonald, 16 K.A.2d 293, 294, 295, 296, 822 P.2d 637 (1992).

7. Conservator who reports inter vivos gift in annual accounting after notice, hearing and allowance by court is relieved from liability. Winter v. Hope, 253 K. 678, 679, 685, 861 P.2d 1282 (1993).

8. Whether penalty of doubling judgment applies only to court-appointed fiduciaries examined. Bolton v. Souter, 19 K.A.2d 384, 385, 388, 872 P.2d 758 (1994).

9. District court is not prohibited from approving conservator's disbursements and accounting solely because bond untimely filed. In re Guardianship & Conservatorship of Heck, 22 K.A.2d 135, 145, 913 P.2d 213 (1996).

10. Spouse's sale of property not part of decedent spouse's estate did not constitute conversion. In re Estate of Harrison, 25 K.A.2d 661, 670, 967 P.2d 1091 (1998).

5. Mentioned and distinguished; double damages provision of K.S.A. 58a-1002 not applicable prior to effective date of KUTC. McCabe v. Duran, 39 K.A.2d 450, 453, 180 P.3d 1098 (2008).

6. Father's expenditure of child's settlement money for needs and desires of child upheld. In re Tatro, 387 B.R. 833, 838, 843 (2008).

7. Nothing in statute limits application only to actions by a court-appointed fiduciary after probate proceedings begin. In re Estate of Taylor, 312 K. 678, 479 P.3d 476 (2021).


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