Supersedeas bond

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A supersedeas bond, also known as a defendant's appeal bond, is a type of surety bond that a court requires from an appellant who wants to delay payment of a judgment until the appeal is over.

An appellant's bond to stay execution on a judgment during the pendency of the appeal. Fed. R. Civ. P. 62(d); Fed. R. App. P. 8(b). -- Often shortened to supersedeas.

This is a feature of common law, and in particular the American legal system. In most European countries an appeal leads to an automatic stay of execution, unless the judge expressly ordered immediate execution.

State Rules of Civil Procedure

In New Jersey, the posting of a bond is not required to appeal a decision. However, if the party wishes to stay a judgment during the appeal, a motion must be made with the Superior Court, and the Court can require the posting of a bond or cash deposit under R.2:9-5. The same rule applies in Delaware under the State Constitution[1] as well as the court rules.[2][3]

Arizona Rules of Civil Appellate Procedure, Rule 7, provides that "except in cases involving custody of children," an appellant may obtain a stay on a lower court judgment and all other further proceedings by filing a supersedeas bond in the Superior Court. ARCAP 7(a)(1).

The supersedeas bond amount fluctuates as it is based on state regulations and case specifics. In California, for instance, the supersedeas bond amount must be 150% of the judgment amount, whereas in Florida, the amount may include two years of statutory interest for those fees[4].

In the State of Florida, the amount of a supersedeas bond is limited to no more than $50 million per appellant.[5]

Bond Advantages

Obtaining a supersedeas bond may appear to be judicial red tape; however, it serves the best interest of the defendant and plaintiff. The appellant uses a supersedeas bond to stay the execution of the judgment, meaning they do not have to pay the full amount before the case goes to re-trial. A surety bond also replaces the need for collateral. The plaintiff, or party whom the money judgment is awarded, is fully protected by the bond and ensured payment[6].