How do you sue someone for theft by deception?

I was 74 years-old at the time. My grandson got locked up; his bail was $3000. I was very ill at the time and was unable to go and post bail. The young lady who lived with me could not go but she got in touch with a friend of hers whom I had met and asked him to post the bail. I met him at the bank gave him the $3000 in cash; he posted the bail. My grandson won the case so the bail was returned. Unfortunately it was returned to the person who bailed my grandson out. He received the $3000 but never gave me my money back. When he was confronted he told me to sue him.

Asked on September 17, 2010 under Bankruptcy Law, New Jersey


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You simply file a lawsuit--either in small claims court yourself, or (preferably) by retaining a lawyer. If you do it yourself, you should be able to get the forms and instructions from your court system; you would also look up the *tort* of theft, and fill out the  documentation, referencing the law you looked up and also the facts--exactly what happened. However, for $3,000, you would probably be better off hiring an attorney to bring the lawsuit for you; you'll have to pay the attorney, but you'll vastly increase your chance of winning and also save yourself all the time and effort involved. Either way though, the answer is, you file a lawsuit to recover the money. Good luck.

Note that you'll need evidence or proof, not just that the person received the bail back, but that you gave them the money in the first place. This may be more difficult with a cash transaction.

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