The Trump campaign did not respond to multiple requests for comment.
Mr. Trump, who has long been loath to pay lawyers himself and has a history of stiffing those who represent him, has used funds in his political action committee, known as Save America, to underwrite his legal bills. The account was originally flooded with donations that were collected during the period immediately after the 2020 election when he was making widespread and false claims of voting fraud.
But with Save America’s coffers nearly drained last year, Mr. Trump sought to refill them through a highly unusual transaction: He asked for a refund of $60 million that he had initially transferred to a different group, a pro-Trump super PAC called MAGA Inc., to support his 2024 campaign.
In addition, Mr. Trump has been directing 10 percent of donations raised online to Save America, meaning 10 cents of every dollar he has received from supporters is going to a PAC that chiefly funds his lawyers.
Mr. Trump has paid legal expenses through both Save America and a second account, called the Make America Great Again PAC, which is an outgrowth of his 2020 re-election committee. In the first half of 2023, Save America transferred $5.85 million to the Make America Great Again PAC, which spent almost all of that sum on legal and investigation-related costs.
The roughly $50 million figure is a combination of such costs through both groups.
Mr. Trump’s super PAC, MAGA Inc., refunded $30 million to Save America in the second half of 2023, an average of $5 million per month. That is in addition to the $12.5 million in refunds that the super PAC had previously reported that it gave back in the first half of the year.