When will Trump pay his $175 million appeal bond? Here's what's next in his civil fraud case

FILE PHOTO: Former U.S. President Donald Trump attends a Trump Organization civil fraud trial at the New York State Supreme Court in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., on November 6, 2023. Photo by Eduardo Muñoz/Reuters.

NEW YORK (AP) — Former President Donald Trump got a reprieve this week after an appeals court reduced the amount he had to put up to suspend collection as he appealed a more than $454 million verdict in his New York civil fraud case.

Here's a look at what happened and what might happen next:

What is the verdict? How did we get here?

The judgment represents $355 million — plus interest and growing daily — that state Judge Arthur Engoron ordered Trump to pay after a month-long trial.

The investigation stemmed from a lawsuit filed by state Attorney General Letitia James. He said Trump, his company and key executives engaged in fraud by inflating the president-turned-politician's wealth on financial statements to help secure loans and insurance.

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Trump, now the Republican presidential nominee again, denied the allegations, as did his co-defendants. The defense said the bankers and insurers used the unaudited statements only to inform their own assessments of Trump's finances, rather than based on business decisions. He says the documents understate his wealth anyway.

Ngoron delivered the judgment to the Attorney General last month. Trump appealed.

What did the Court of Appeal do?

A five-judge panel of appeals judges agreed Monday to suspend collection if Trump pays $175 million within 10 days. This was a significant relief, as one of the judges had rejected Trump's earlier $100 million bond.

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Under New York law, someone can stay enforcement of a judgment by posting a bond during an appeal — essentially, a guarantee that money will be paid if the appeal fails — or otherwise covers the amount owed.

Trump's lawyers said he couldn't arrange such a large bond. They said potential underwriters would require 120 percent of the judgment, or more than $557 million in collateral, and would only take cash or other liquid assets, not real estate. It is common for bonds to exceed the actual amount of judgments to cover interest and costs incurred during an appeal.

Lawyers suggested that Trump hold $1 billion in cash, stocks or other liquid assets to provide collateral for the bond and keep another chunk of cash for his business operations. Trump, meanwhile, said on his Truth Community site that he has nearly $500 million in cash, but wants to spend some of it on his campaign.

James' office, meanwhile, filed a notice of ruling, a technical step toward moving toward the ability to collect.

What does Trump plan to do now?

Shortly after learning of the appeals court's decision, Trump said he would soon come up with a bond, bond equivalent or cash.

Before Monday's ruling, Gary Giulietti, a Trump insurance broker and friend, said in an affidavit to the appeals court that large underwriters typically would not issue a bond for more than $100 million. Prosecutors have suggested that Trump may have obtained the bonds from multiple sources. This has happened on other occasions.

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As for Trump's coffers, he could reap a windfall from his stake in his social media company. Shares of Trump Media & Technology Group Corp. rose on the Nasdaq exchange on Tuesday during the first day of trading.

Trump owns about 60 percent of the company, which could be worth billions of dollars if it turns a profit. Currently, the company's “lock-up” provision prevents them from selling their newly issued shares for six months.

What did Trump do in other cases?

Earlier this month, writer E. Trump received a $91.6 million appeal bond to cover money awarded to Jean Carroll by a federal civil court judge. She alleged that Trump sexually harassed her in the 1990s and then defamed her when she publicly accused him in 2019. He denies all of Carol's claims and appeals

Federal Insurance Co., a unit of insurer Chubb, underwrote the bond. This covers 110 percent of the $83.3 million in loans.

After an earlier but related federal civil trial involving Carroll, Trump placed more than $5.5 million in a court escrow account while he appealed the jury verdict in that trial.

If the judgment is affirmed on appeal, the money will cover the judgment. Anything left over goes back to Trump.

If the judgment is eventually overturned, he will get the full amount back.

Associated Press writer Michael R. Sisak contributed to this report.

FILE PHOTO: Former U.S. President Donald Trump attends a Trump Organization civil fraud trial at the New York State Supreme Court in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., on November 6, 2023. Photo by Eduardo Muñoz/Reuters.

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