Recently, I had a client contact my office for a Stay pursuant to CPLR 5519/ CPLR 5518 where the court granted a replevin action where the client would have to turn over certain items, and which required the party seeking the replevin to post a bond. The party that was having their items turned over wanted to approach the Appellate Court for a Stay of Execution of the Decision in Order.
Since there is no set bond amount for the party seeking a stay, it’s not a simple proceeding where you have a money judgment and you can bond a specific judgment. You would need to either motion the Appellate Division to set a bond amount to stay the decision in order or motion the lower court, which is the trial court, to set a bond amount. The bond amount should protect the other side for damages due to the stay. If there isn’t a monetary value, you would have to motion the court to make an argument for a specific bond amount, which the other side can oppose. Hopefully, the court will come to a determination of what that bond amount should be.
I have a simple question for any attorney who approaches me for this type of obligation: “Can your client obtain the bond with favorable terms?” What I mean by this is, if you’re going to motion either the trial court or the Appellate Court or both for a stay and to set the bond amount, you want to first make sure that the client can obtain the bond. What I suggest is having the client apply for the bond through my office before even making a motion.
Applying for a bond does not cost your client anything, and knowing that your client can obtain the bond quickly once the bond amount is set, gives you comfort in knowing that you will be able to obtain a bond if the court grants the stay.
Now, the reason to do this is — if your client has to post collateral to obtain a bond, it may take them time to put together the collateral, which is why I always suggest having everything lined up ahead of time. The other thought process is — you don’t want to motion the court for relief that you cannot obtain. So, contacting my office ahead of time and applying for the bond, means your client would fill out a simple bond application, and provide a financial statement. You would have to provide some court documents related to that case, along with a sample motion for the stay, which would allow us to underwrite the matter and give you a definite answer.
Another benefit of doing it this way is that you can represent to the court that you’ve contacted a reputable bond company, they’ve offered terms through a specific insurance company that’s qualified to do business in the state of New York, and that you can obtain the bond if they grant the motion. So, you can go into court with the confidence you need that, if a bond’s required, you can post it immediately.
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