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Prize money was the money paid out to the crew of a Royal Manticoran Navy warship as a reward for a capture.
After a prize had been seized either by combat or through impounding a smuggler, a so-called prize crew returned it to the closest RMN base. The Admiralty Court then had to confirm the verdict. If the vessel in question was confiscated, its assessed value was added to the fine the owner had to pay.
The commanding officer of the ship that had taken the prize was given six percent of the total, with the other officers receiving twenty-four percent and the noncommissioned officers and enlisted personnel splitting the remaining seventy percent among them.
By tradition, prize money was untaxable. (HH1)
In 1900 PD, the Admiralty Court ruled that the Hauptman Lines freighter RMMS Mondragon was seized for smuggling and awarded the prize money from the sale of both ship and cargo to the commander and crew of HMS Fearless. This instantly turned Captain Honor Harrington into a millionaire. (HH1)