bailee (custodian)

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Bailee is a person who receives possession of a property or goods, usually pursuant to a contract of bailment. A bailee is responsible for the safe return of the property or goods to the owner (bailor) when the contract is fulfilled. Unlike a contract of sale, the bailee has to return the goods or property to the bailor, under a contract of bailment. A bailee is also referred to as a custodian.

Examples include banks holding bonds, storage companies where furniture or files are deposited, a parking garage, or a kennel or horse ranch where an animal is boarded.

[Last updated in July of 2022 by the Wex Definitions Team]