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MAINE SUPREME JUDICIAL COURT					Reporter of Decisions
Decision:	1998 ME 80
Docket:	Wal-97-297	
Argued:	November 14, 1997	
Decided:	April 23, 1998




	[¶1]  Nelson Johnson appeals from the judgment of the Waldo County
Probate Court (Barrett, J.) ordering him to cooperate in the transfer of
Edward Cardner's assets to Cardner's guardian.  Johnson contends that the
court lacked personal jurisdiction over him.  Finding no merit in Johnson's
contention, we affirm the judgment.
	[¶2]  Cardner granted a durable power of attorney to Johnson, a New
Jersey attorney, in 1994.  Apparently without Cardner's involvement, in
1995, Johnson formed a New Jersey nonprofit corporation named the Ed
and Tex Cardner Scholarship Fund to be operated by a five-member board of
directors that included Johnson.  Johnson was also its registered agent.  In
1996, with Cardner's funds, Johnson purchased a $200,000 annuity naming
the corporation as payee.  Cardner received no beneficial tax treatment as a
result of this purchase and testified at the guardianship hearing that he
opposed the use of his funds in this manner.
	[¶3]  In June 1996 Cardner moved to Maine to live with his sister-in-
law, Carmela Dufour.  Shortly thereafter Johnson began sending $1,000 each
month to Dufour for Cardner's care.
	[¶4]  In 1997 Dufour petitioned for an appointment as Cardner's
guardian and conservator.  At that time Johnson retained Maine counsel,
who filed a notice of appearance with the court on Johnson's behalf.  After
being informed by the court that a notice of appearance had no effect in a
probate proceeding, Johnson's counsel filed a demand for notice with the
court, stating that Johnson was interested in the estate as a holder of
Cardner's durable power of attorney.
	[¶5]  Following a hearing attended by Johnson's counsel, the court
appointed Dufour as temporary conservator, and Johnson and Dufour began
negotiating the transfer of Cardner's assets to Dufour.  Johnson ultimately
agreed to turn over the Cardner assets within his control on two conditions: 
the written agreement include a provision that purported to absolve
Johnson of any liability he might have with regard to the purchase of the
annuity; and Dufour submit the agreement to the court for confirmation.
	[¶6]  Johnson's counsel attended the hearing on Dufour's guardianship
petition in May 1997 and hired a court reporter to record it.  At the hearing
Dufour submitted a motion requesting that the court order Johnson to
cooperate in changing the payee of the annuity to Cardner during his
lifetime.  Johnson's counsel objected to the motion, stating that the court
had no authority over the scholarship fund.  The court deferred making a
decision concerning the fund and requested that Johnson and Dufour submit
any memoranda, pleadings or documentation they wanted the court to
consider in relation to the issue.  The court appointed Dufour as Cardner's
guardian and confirmed the agreement between Dufour and Johnson.
	[¶7]  After the hearing, Johnson informed the court that he would not
participate in any further proceedings involving the scholarship fund. 
Following a hearing without Johnson or his counsel, the court found the
annuity to be an asset of Cardner's estate and Johnson to be an interested
person who was bound by the court's orders.  The court ordered Johnson to
cooperate and execute all documents needed to transfer the annuity
payments to Cardner during his lifetime.  The court also ordered that the
next yearly annuity payment be held in escrow until it could be transferred
to Cardner.
	[¶8]  The sole issue on appeal is whether Johnson is bound by the
court's orders.{1}  Dufour argues that Johnson submitted to the court's
jurisdiction by virtue of his actions.  We agree.
	[¶9]  Johnson filed a demand for notice with the court stating that he
was "interested in the estate."  Having filed this demand for notice, he
received notice of all proceedings and his counsel attended all proceedings,
except the last hearing dealing with the scholarship fund.  Johnson also
required Dufour to submit for confirmation the agreement limiting his
liability for his purchase of the annuity.  Johnson clearly sought this
confirmation as a means of protecting himself from liability for his
management of Cardner's estate.  Having sought the court's protection in
this manner, Johnson has submitted to its jurisdiction.  See Donn-Griffin v.
Donn, 615 A.2d 253, 254-55 (Me. 1992).
	[¶10]  Johnson also contends that the court erred in finding him to be
an "interested person" subject to its jurisdiction, see 18-A M.R.S.A.
§§ 1-201(20), 1-401, 3-106 (1998), and that the court could not assert
jurisdiction over him pursuant to Maine's long-arm statute, see 14 M.R.S.A.
§ 704-A (1980 & Supp. 1997).  Because Johnson sought the court's
protection, and thereby submitted to its jurisdiction, it is not necessary to
address these contentions.
	The entry is:
					Judgment affirmed.
Attorney for appellant: Clark D. Kimball, Esq., (orally) Carver, Kimball & Baiungo 10 Church Street Belfast, ME 04915 Attorney for appellee: Susan C. Thiem, Esq., (orally) RR # 2 Box 558 Lincolnville, ME 04849
FOOTNOTES******************************** {1} Johnson also argued that the court did not have jurisdiction over the scholarship fund and thus lacked authority to order the fund to hold the then-upcoming annuity payment in escrow. Johnson asserts on appeal that his involvement with the proceedings is only as an individual. A litigant cannot assert a third party's rights, and therefore Johnson has no standing to argue on behalf of the fund. Common Cause v. State, 455 A.2d 1, 6 (Me. 1983).