Cash Bail Refunds

Courts, correctional facilities, and jails collect Cash Bail.

If you pay the Cash Bail then you are the Surety.

The Surety gets a receipt as proof of payment when the Cash Bail is paid. The Department of Finance holds the Cash Bail funds until the court closes the case and issues a court order to refund the Cash Bail.

  • You do not have to do anything to receive a Cash Bail refund. We usually receive the Cash Bail refund court order request from the court about six (6) weeks after the case is closed.
  • We then mail the Cash Bail refund to the Surety at the address on the Cash Bail receipt within two (2) weeks.
  • You should wait eight (8) weeks after the case ends if you have not received your refund.
  • When you contacting us about your Cash Bail refund, please have your receipt ready to provide information.

If you do not receive your Cash Bail refund in the mail eight (8) weeks after the case ends, contact the Department of Finance. Please have a copy of your Cash Bail receipt ready when providing information.

Getting Your Refund Mailed To You
Generally, no action is required. When a case is over, the court sends a refund order to the Department of Finance within six weeks. The Department of Finance sends a check to the surety (or the assignee), at the address on the Cash Bail receipt, within two (2) weeks of receiving the refund order from the court. In total it should take about eight weeks after the case has ended for you to receive your Cash Bail refund.

Fees
If the defendant was convicted, the Department of Finance deducts three percent (3%) of the amount of the Cash Bail to cover administrative costs before issuing a Cash Bail refund. If the defendant was not convicted, and the case was dismissed or acquitted, then the full amount of the Cash Bail deposit is refunded to the Surety. Courts may impose additional fees. For more information on these fees, you will have to contact the appropriate court to discuss the fee.

Stopping Payment on a Cash Bail Refund You Didn't Receive
If you are the Surety (the person that paid the Cash Bail) or the Assignee (the person to whom the Surety transferred the Cash Bail), and you did not receive a refund check within eight (8) weeks after the case ended, contact the Cash Bail Unit. If the Department of Finance mailed you a Cash Bail refund check, we may need to place a stop payment on the check. Complete a Stop Payment Affidavit. Mail or deliver the notarized affidavit to the address on the form. Please note it takes 30 days to re-issue a check after a stop payment has been processed.

Claiming a Cash Bail Refund When the Surety is Deceased
A surety's next-of-kin (or the person paying for the funeral) can submit a claim for the bail refund by completing a Surety Survivor's Affidavit. Mail or deliver the affidavit, notarized, with a copy of the death certificate and paid funeral bill to the address on the form.

The Department of Finance will provide information about a Cash Bail refund only to the Surety, who is the person who posted the Cash Bail, or to another person to whom the Surety has given a signed, notarized statement, giving that person permission to inquire about the Cash Bail refund.

Attorneys: An attorney may inquire about Cash Bail refunds only if the Surety has assigned or transferred the Cash Bail to the attorney.

Other people may request information about a Cash Bail refund by writing to:

NYC Department of Finance
Treasury Division, Court Assets Unit
66 John Street, 12th Floor
New York, NY 10038


Telephone Inquiries
Call Finance's Bail Unit
212-908-7619
Monday - Friday from 9:00am to 4:00pm
or Email Us.
 
You will need the following information from your Cash Bail Receipt to inquire about a refund:
  1. The docket number (or indictment number) noted on the Cash Bail receipt;
  2. The defendant's name;
  3. The date the Cash Bail was posted;
  4. The county where the Cash Bail was posted;
  5. The amount of Cash Bail that was posted;

In-Person Inquiries

NYC Department of Finance
Treasury/Court Asset Unit
66 John Street, 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10038
Monday - Friday, 9:00am – 4:30pm
 
You must bring a government issued picture ID, from the following list:
  • A valid New York State driver's license or non-driver's ID with a photo;
  • A passport;
  • A benefits card
  • A municipal ID card
If you do not have any of the above you will need to bring two ID’s from the following list:
  • A Social Security Card;
  • Your voter's registration card;
  • An employment ID;
  • Your utility bill (issued within the last 60 days); and
  • Any ID with your signature, subject to the Cash Bail Unit's discretion.

 

It is very important that you notify Finance when you change your address. This will help avoid a delay in getting the refund to you.
 
Complete the Cash Bail Refund Change of Address Notice and notarize it. Return the completed notarized form and a copy of a government issued ID to the address provided on the form.

You may also visit the Finance Cash Bail Unit to complete an Address Change Notice. The In-Person Inquiries section contains information on office location and list of acceptable identification documents.

What to Know About the Cash Bail Refund Process Brochure
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