Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 49. Oaths, Affirmations and Bonds
Subtitle .
Chapter 3. Relief of Sureties
7/17/2024

Chapter 3. Relief of Sureties.

§ 49-22. Sureties on official bonds.

When the surety, or his committee or personal representative, of any officer, or commissioner or receiver under decree of a court, required to give bond shall petition the court by which the bond is taken, or in which, or in the clerk's office of which, it is recorded, or the circuit court of the county or city, in which, where the bond of such officer is not taken by or filed in any court or clerk's office, the officer resides, to be relieved from the suretyship, such court shall, on proof of reasonable notice of his intended motion, require such officer, commissioner or receiver to give a new bond in the same manner as if none had been given by him. The surety in any bond required to be approved by the Governor shall file his petition in the Circuit Court of the City of Richmond, and the surety in the bond of any clerk of the Supreme Court or the Court of Appeals shall file his petition in the court for which his principal is the clerk.

Code 1919, § 5771; 1984, c. 703.

§ 49-23. Surety on bond given under decree of court for payment of money.

A surety, or his committee, or personal representative, in a bond, other than the bond of a commissioner or receiver, given under a decree or order of a court for the payment of money, if no suit be pending for the recovery thereof, may file his petition in the court which rendered or made the decree or order, or to which the case has been removed, for a bond of indemnity. The petition shall state that the petitioner has reason to believe that he, or the estate he represents, is likely to suffer pecuniary loss in consequence of such suretyship and the grounds of such belief and shall be verified by affidavit. Upon the filing of the petition and proof of reasonable notice to the principal in the bond and all the parties in interest, the court may require such indemnifying bond, with satisfactory sureties, to be given within a time to be prescribed. If such bond be given, it shall be with condition and shall bind the obligors therein to indemnify the sureties in the former bond against all loss or damage in consequence of such former bond. If such bond be not given, the court, on the request of such surety, personal representative or committee, if the money be due and payable, or whenever the same becomes due and payable, shall order suit to be brought for its recovery and prosecuted to judgment and by execution.

Code 1919, § 5776.

§ 49-24. Failure of officer to give new bond.

If any such officer, commissioner or receiver, being so required, shall fail to give a new bond, as provided in § 49-22, within the time required by the court, he shall be deemed to be guilty of a breach of duty, and shall be forthwith removed from his office or trust.

Code 1919, § 5773.

§ 49-25. Surety may require creditor to sue.

The surety, guarantor or endorser, or his committee or personal representative, of any person bound by any contract may, if a right of action has accrued thereon, require the creditor or his committee or personal representative, by notice in writing, to institute suit thereon, and if he be bound in a bond with a condition, or for the performance of some collateral undertaking, he shall also specify in such requirement the breach of the condition or undertaking for which he requires suit to be brought. Such written notice shall also notify the creditor, his committee or personal representative, that failure to act will result in the loss of the surety, guarantor or endorser, his committee or personal representative as security for the debt in accordance with § 49-26.

Code 1919, § 5774; 1979, c. 664.

§ 49-26. Effect of failure of creditor to sue.

If such creditor, or his committee or personal representative, shall not, within thirty days after such requirement, institute suit against every party to such contract who is resident in this Commonwealth and not insolvent and prosecute the same with due diligence to judgment and by execution, he shall forfeit his right to demand of such surety, guarantor or endorser or his estate, and of his cosureties and their estates, the money due by any such contract for the payment of money, or the damages sustained by any breach of the collateral condition or undertaking specified as aforesaid; but the conditions, rights and remedies against the principal debtor shall remain unimpaired thereby.

Code 1919, § 5775; 1979, c. 664.

§ 49-27. Surety's remedy against principal for money paid.

If any person liable as bail, surety, guarantor or endorser, or any sheriff liable for not taking sufficient bail, or the committee, heir or personal representative of any so liable, pay, in whole or in part, such note, bond or other demand, or any judgment, decree or execution rendered or awarded on account of such liability, the person having a right of action for the amount so paid may, by motion in the court in which the judgment, decree or execution was rendered or awarded, obtain a judgment or decree against any person against whom such right of action exists for the amount so paid, with interest from the time of payment, and five per centum damages on such amount. The person so paying, in whole or in part, any such judgment, decree or execution rendered or awarded on account of such liability, or any such note, bond or other demand, shall, by operation of law, in addition to the remedy above provided, be substituted to and become the owner of all of the rights and remedies of the creditor for the enforcement and collection of the amount or amounts so paid, and shall be deemed the assignee thereof. Executions, or other legal process to which the principal creditor was entitled, may be issued on any such judgment or decree in the name of the original creditor against the person primarily liable for the benefit of the person secondarily liable to the extent to which he has satisfied the original creditor.

But nothing in this section shall be construed to impair or affect in any way the security of the original creditor, or his rights and remedies as to any balance which may be due him. The provisions of this section are cumulative and are intended to protect the rights of any person secondarily liable to the extent to which he has satisfied the obligation of the person primarily liable. All assignments heretofore made of judgments and decrees to persons secondarily liable are hereby validated, and upon the same executions may be issued as hereinbefore provided.

Code 1919, § 5777; 1926, p. 854.

§ 49-28. Confession of judgment by surety or failure to notify principal to defend.

If any such surety, other than bail, or his committee, heir or personal representative, confess judgment, or suffer judgment to go against him by default, without giving notice to his principal, if he be a resident of the Commonwealth, or his committee or personal representative, to defend the suit, and after such principal offers to defend the suit, and tenders counter security, approved by the court in which the suit is pending, the principal, or his committee, heirs or representative, may have the benefit of every defense against the motion or suit of such surety, or his committee, representative or heirs, against him that he might have had against the creditor.

Code 1919, § 5778.

§ 49-29. Failure of principal to offer to defend suit against surety.

In all cases in which any principal debtor, or his committee, representative or heirs, knowing of the pendency of any suit against his surety, or the committee, heir or personal representative of such surety, shall not offer to defend such suit, he shall be precluded from making any defense to the claim of the surety which he might have made against the suit of the creditor.

Code 1919, § 5778.