Can my bailbonds man keep my fully paid bail on the technicallity that the person that bailed me out died a month after the case was dismissed?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can my bailbonds man keep my fully paid bail on the technicallity that the person that bailed me out died a month after the case was dismissed?

I was arrested on June 3 of last year. My GF posted my bail through a bail bondsman with my credit card. My case was dismissed on March 9 of this year. I contacted the bail bondsman a week later and they told me that they would call me back if I needed to pick up the refund in person. I never received a call. My GF passed on April 3. Then, 2 weeks later, I still hadn’t received the check so I called again. I informed them that she passed and that I lived at a new address to mail the check. They said the same thing. Now, about a month later, I called and was informed that since my GF was dead they don’t have to pay me back. The original contract said that I would receive $750 of the $1500 back after the case was dismissed because her license was out of county.

Asked on May 24, 2018 under Business Law, Texas


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Under the plain terms of the contract with the bailbondsman, who was to receive the money back? If it was you, then since you complied with it, you must be paid the money--your girlfriend's death has no bearing on your right to receive money due to you. You can sue them for "breach of contract" (for violating the terms of the contract) for your money.
However, if according to the contract's terms, your girlfriend was to receive the money, you have no right to it. Rather the money is a debt owed to her "estate" and the executor (if there was a will) or personal representative (or administrator--either term may be used) of her estate can sue for it, on behalf of whomever will inherit from her. (Since you and she were not married, you would only inherit if she had a will leaving something to you.)

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