Many of the legal proceedings that take place in modern courtrooms involve monetary responsibilities. Whether court costs are being included in the disposition of a case or the court wants the parties to fulfill certain tasks, the availability of credible finances is important. Some cases will require the filing of court bonds to verify financial status and ensure personal responsibility. There are three primary types of fiduciary court bonds that are used within the legal system today. These bonds are custodian bonds, executor bonds, and probate bonds.
1. Custodian Bonds
Guardianship over a minor, an elderly individual, or someone with a disability can be taxing. Before the court will grant legal custodianship to an individual, a judge will want assurance that the finances of the minor, elderly individual, or disabled person will be handled responsibly.
Custodian bonds help to grant this assurance. A custodian bond is typically filed in cases where control over another person's assets is being transferred to a temporary guardian. If the guardian abuses his or her authority, the court can cash in the custodian bond to replenish money taken from the compromised individual.
2. Executor Bonds
When an individual passes away, his or her estate will need to be distributed among surviving family members and appointed heirs. An executor is named by the court to handle the disposition of an individual's estate.
Since an executor will have full access to the real estate holdings, investments, bank accounts, and personal possessions of the deceased. the court may require the filing of an executor bond before granting executor status. An executor bond ensures that an estate will be distributed according to the will of the deceased and any applicable probate laws.
3. Probate Bonds
When an estate enters probate, a series of tasks must be completed before the estate can be released to the proper heirs. Some of these tasks can include compiling the deceased's assets, paying off creditors, filing income and estate taxes, and resolving legal disputes regarding the distribution of assets.
Probate bonds are filed with the court to guarantee that court-ordered tasks are completed honestly and in accordance with the direction of the court. Failure to comply could result in financial loss for the individual(s) responsible for handling an estate in probate.
Court cost bonds are designed to offer financial protection in certain cases. Custodian bonds, executor bonds, and probate bonds play a valuable role in preventing possible theft or exploitation.
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