De Bonis Propriis Law and Legal Definition

De bonis propriis is a Latin term. It means ‘of his own goods.’ In early days, de bonis propriis referred to a judgment allowing execution on an administrator’s individual property rather than the property of an intestate. Such judgments were made in cases where the administrator mismanaged the estate.

The following is an example of a case law referring to the term:

The legislature expressly intended to extend to heirs the provision that exempts personal representatives from individual liability by default. As a default judgment de bonis propriis against a personal representative was erroneous, a similar judgment against an heir was not proper. The heir, like an executor or administrator, was not responsible beyond an estate that came to him from his ancestor, and a judgment should have been rendered and levied on the estate descended. [Phillips v. Munsell, 28 Ky. 253 (Ky. 1830)].