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kind, because it was a system under which the fullest possible opportunity of considering it and John Smith of Whiteacre, would have to enter person registering had the power to place on the making any alterations that might appear to me into an examination of all the titles of the register, not the deeds themselves, but a state to be necessary. I thanked him in private, and adjoining owners, in order to satisfy himself ment of what he conceived to be the effect of the now I thank him in public. (Hear, hear.) I that he had all the real owners before him. All particular deed. In the House of Commons I regard what he did as not only courteous to that for the objects we have in view is unnecessary. took the liberty of objecting to that system on two myself personally, but aseful to the public, It is disregarded in the practical dealings with grounds. The first was the ground I have just because under no other circumstances would it land, and is a thing nobody asks for. I cannot stated; the second was that the Bill provided have been in my power, within a week after the present this view better than it was presented by that in the registration of the estate the bounda- commencement of the session, to place before your the late Mr. Waley to the Royal Commission of ries of the estate should be settled irrevocably by lordships the Bill which I have now the honour of 1868: “The relinquishment of the practice of a judicial decision, the probable consequence of submitting for your consideration. (Hear.) My determining the boundary of registered lands which would be disputes as to boundaries among lords, I will now explain what it is I propose to do. will leave the registered owner subject to all the adjacent owners. However the Bill passed It will not be necessary for me to go through all the possible claims of his neighbours, so that into law, and a registry office, with a registrar and the provisions of this measure, but there are an indefeasible title will mean a title beyond staff, was established in London with a view of questions which will naturally occur to the minds question by any except adjoining owners. To carring the measure into effect. A certain of some of your lordships, and will also occur to this I think that there is no practical objection. number of proprietors brought in their proper. the public out of doors, and these questions it may The possible rights of adjoining owners may be ties for registration in the office, but the number be convenient for me to anticipate and answer. classed with rights of way and other rights, the was so small, as compared with the aggregate of One question that will be asked is this: What is liability to which is practically consistent with proprietors of land in this country, that the Act the kind of title you are going to register; is the title, indefeasible ownership.” Well, then, the Dext was generally regarded as a failure. I now ask once registered, to be thenceforth indefeasible question which will be asked is this-What do your Lordships to come on with me to the year My lords, under this bill I propose that there you propose to have a registry of ? My lords, I 1868. At that time I filled the office which I may be a registry of three kinds of title-viz., a propose to register fee simple estates, leaseholds have now again the honour to hold, and I was title absolute or indefeasible ; a title limited-that of a certain length, and charges where mortgages unwilling that the subject of the transfer of is to say, a title certified to be good from a are on the estate. Then comes the question-Is land should be allowed to remain in its present particular date, but not beyond it; and a simple the registry to be compulsory or is it to be volnn; position. Accordingly a Royal Commission title of the proprietor in possession and asserting tary? I propose that for three years there shall was appointed to inquire into the working himself to be owner. We should then have a title be no compulsion in any form. I myself am very of the Act of 1862. That commission was com certified to be absolute, a title certified for a sanguine that it will be found that if this measure posed of men well qualified for the duties they had limited date, a title not certified. I know it has should have your lordships' approval, and beto discharge in connection with it. Besides been proposed that what is called " a good holding come law, a great deal of business will have been several of the law lords, it included several emi. title should be allowed to be certified by regis. transacted under it, and
a great quantity of land nent barristers, conveyancers, and solicitors. Itration as indefeasible. I am not able to make will have been registered before the expiration of may venture to commend the report of that com. that proposition. “A good holding title” is not three years. I say so for this reason: This is a mission to any of your lordships who may not an uncommon phrase, but it is not a legal phrase; subject on which the public mind has been have read it, as a very interesting piece of reading, it has no legal precision, and cannot be defined in maturing for fifteen years; the attention of and one which throws real light upon the present legal terms. Quite the contrary, because it must the profession has been directed to it, and state of the law. It enters into the history of be remembered that what may be in the opinion the attention of the public has been directed what was done in 1862, and states that, in the of one conveyancer" a good holding title" may to it, and I think that almost without ex: opinion of the commissioners, the Act of that year be in the mind of another conveyancer a title ception there has been an opinion universally had proved a failure. It then states what, in the surrounded with difficulty and doubt, and expressed in favour of a registry of title such as I minds of the commissioners, had been the causes for that reason a title which he would not have described it. A registry of land such as I of its failure. I think the most conspicuous of allow his client to accept. There can be no have described it brings up land as far as can be those are the causes which I have already stated- doubt that in the dealings with land such to the average of ships and stock. It is that the its mode of dealing with boundaries, and its want a title is very often accepted, but it is always public ask for, and the public desire to have. of simplicity in placing what I may call the title one which the purchaser accepts at his own Moreover, we have the advantage derived from of deeds on the register. The commissioners risk, and if loss results from it the loss is his. the experience of the failure of the Act of 1862. assigned some other causes of failure also, and It would be a very different thing to allow by We know the causes which led to the failure of they recommended that another system should be law a registry of such a title as that, with the that legielation and we are able in these proposals adopted — that there should be a recurrence view to a legal certificate that it was indefeasible. to avoid them. I am therefore sanguine enough to the principle on which the Bills of 1859 But I propose to do that which I think will do to hope that without any compulsion we shall had been framed. Five of the commissioners full justice to those who wish to deal with good have a very large amount of business transacted recommended a literal reproduction of the Bills of holding titles. I propose that if persons come in the registration of title within the course of 1859, the other commissioners recommended that before the registrar with a title which is market three years. I know it has been stated, and the principle of those Bills should be adhered to. able and good, but in which, by reason of some stated very strongly sometimes, that the solicitors I now pass from the report of 1868 to the last incident, there is a theoretical imperfection, the will oppose a measure of this kind and prevent it session, when my noble and learned friend who registrar is to be at liberty to state that incident from succeeding. I do not think so. I have had then occupied the Woolsack (Lord Selborne) to the court, and if the court is satisfied that it some experience of solicitors ; and without ad. brought in a Bill which was mainly founded on may be waived and disregarded, it is to be at verting to what is obvious, that even in a matter the report of the commissioners, and which liberty to act on that opinion and certify the of self-interest whatever improves the law and adopted, I venture to think, the true principle title as indefeasible. I propose to go further. gives greater facilities for dealing with land must of the registry of the title to land. There were No title is now considered by the Court of Chan- bea benefit, and not an evil to the Profession-withtwo differences between the Bill of my noble cery as marketable which has not its root sixty out adverting to that consideration, I speak from friend and the Bill of 1859. My noble and learned years back. I proposo that, under this Bill, the my own experience of solicitors when I say of the friend proposed to take the office of the Land registrar may accept titles having their root only great mass of them that I believe there is not in Registry in London, created by the Act of 1862, forty years back, providing there be nothing to the kingdom a body of men more intelligent, more as the registry to which titles were to be brought; lead him to suspect that there are imperfections liberal in their views, more desirous of improve whereas the bill of 1859 provided for the establish in the earlier period of the title. I also propose ment in the law, and more anxious to avail ment of a Landed Estates Court similar to that that he shall be at liberty to receive as facts themselves of such improvement when made. which exists in Ireland. He also proposed that recitals of deeds twenty years old. The next (Hear.) But that does not depend upon my tes. after a time there should be a compulsory registra- question is What are
you to do about timony, because if your lordships refer to the tion of land, whereas the Bill of 1859 had left the boundaries ? I have stated that an objection evidence given before the Royal Commission, you registration entirely voluntary. Your lordships to the Bill of 1862 was that it required the boun- will find a great deal of testimony on this point; will recollect that in the last session you were daries to be settled. I propose that the boun. and the commissioners say that there is evidence very much engaged in the consideration of daries should not be settled. I propose that the to show that after the passing of the Act of 1862 the Judicature Bill, which occupied a very registrar should describe the boundaries in the there was the greatest anxiety among the most considerable time. It was obvious when my noble best way he can, but that he should not be eminent solicitors to take advantage of that and learned friend first introduced his Bill on the charged
with the duty of deciding questions of enactment, and that they did not abandon it subject of land there would be much difficulty in boundary as between adjoining owners, and I until experience had shown them that it was an; considering them before a select committee, and make that proposition on this principle : ' It was satisfactory and more expensive than the old yet it was obvious that the provisions required to shown before the Royal Commissioners of 1868 system. Your lordships will find it was no oppo. be minutely inquired into. Under those circum- that in practice boundaries never create any sition of the solicitors that caused the failure of stances, I recommend my noble and learned friend difficulty in the buying and selling of property; the Act of 1862; and therefore, unless I much not to proceed with the scheme, but to refer it to that questions of boundary were managed quite deceive myself as to the advantages of this measome distinguished conveyancer in the interval easily on the spot, and never came before counsel. sure, I do not think it is one which will have to between the two sessions, that it might have the In the next place, my objection to a settlement of encounter the opposition of the Profession. I benefit of his revision. My noble and learned boundaries by the registrar is this—that it would propose, then, my lords, that for three years friend adopted that suggestion, and placed his bring forward disputes and lead to litigation. On after the passing of the Act there shall be Land Titles and Transfer Bill before Mr. Hall, many estates there have been unsettled questions nothing in the shape of compulsion. But I pronow Vice-Chancellor Sir Charles Hall, who was of boundary for hundreds of years, but they have pose that after that time, whenever a sale of then practising at the Bar. I must pause to say been allowed to remain in abeyance and never have land is made, there shall be an obligation that I think, if my noble and learned friend had cansed any difference among the owners of ad- to register the title. If such registration be applied to the profession at large as to the person joining estates. But if the duty of settling not effected the purchaser shall ovly obtain best qualified to deal with a matter of this kind the boundaries devolved on the registrar an equitable title. A legal title he shall not in a manner safe and satisfactory, there would that satisfactory state of things might be obtain till he registers. That mild kind of comhave been an unanimity of opinion that he could put an end to, because if those
questions were pulsion will not be put in operation till we have not have made a more judicious selection; and I raised for decision, the parties on either had three years' experience of the working of the further think that it is of the greatest possible side might be unwilling to concede. I am of registration system. (Hear, hear.) Well, then, advantage that the matter has been considered opinion, therefore, that this settlement of boun. the question will be asked, Who is to register the by a person so experienced in the law of real daries would be a means of creating unnecessary title? I take the office which already exists—the property as Sir Charles Hall. (Hear, hear.) I difficulties. (Hear, hear.) But there is a stiil office of the land registrar. I own-it may be, must also pause to say another word with regard further reason against it. It would be impos- perhaps, a partiality for my own offspring-that to my poble and learned friend. A short time sible for the registrar to decide as between ad. I should have been better pleased to have estabbefore the change of Government, but when that joining owners unless he had all those owners lished in this country a Landed Estates Court, change was said to be intended, my noble and beforejhim; but when John Smith comes before after the fashion of the Irish Landed Estates learned friend communicated to me that it might him to register his title to Whiteacre, how is the Court; but there is the difficulty
of having an possibly be my duty to introduce a measure on registrar to know the boundaries of all the owners office which has been already created and which I this subject, and he handed over to me the papers of property on both sides of Whiteacre ? The wish to utilise. In addition to that consideration connected with his measure, that I might have the registrar, if he were to settle the boundaries of there is the fact of the passing of the Judicature
Act of last year, the principle of which is to con- Lord concluded by laying all these Bill on the table penses, which, I venture to say, are both a gregate all the principal Courts of the kingdom. of their Lordships' House.--Lord SELBORNE. very great annual pecuniary loss to the country It would be somewhat at variance with the pro- My Lords, I am glad that the conduct of these ać large and a disgrace to our present system of visions of that Act to establish a fresh court measures should have fallen into the hands jurisprudence. (Hear, hear.) — Lord HATHERLEY outside ; but I am not without hope that if of my noble and learned friend, because, if was happy to think, from the manner in which this measure turns out successful we may have any man in this country has given long and the Bills had been introduced and received, that at some future period, a conveyancing judge close attention to these subjects, and thoroughly the time had at length arrived for which many whose court would form a part of the Supreme understands them, it is my noble and learned who had grown grey in the Profession had Court under the Judicature Act, and be charged friend.
sense they are peculiarly his ardently longed, in which some improved with the duty of registering titles. But I own, because it was his fortune in 1859 to be the system of conveyancing would be established, take the Land Office as it stands, and the first to lay on the table of the other House of and some intelligible means of placing title registrar at the head of that office will be the Parliament well-developed measures applicable to on record afforded. The extreme importance registrar under this new Bill. He will act under dealings with these subjects. I was thankful to of this step, both as regards the increased the Supreme Court of Judicature, or under what my noble and learned friend last session for the value of property to those who held it, and ever judge of that court to whom the duty may be approval he then expressed of the leading prin- to those who might desire to raise money assigned of dealing with any questions which may ciples of my Bills, and also for the suggestions he upon it, could not be exaggerated. An enorbe referred to the court under the measure which then made; and I am glad to hear the approbationmous advantage would also arise to those who I am about to introduce. I must say a word on a he has so kindly expressed of the choice I made of desired to acquire small parcels of land, but point respecting which a question will be asked the gentleman who discharged the very important who, owing to the present state of the law, Are you going to have local registries
? or is the duty of revising the Bills which I'then introduced. were absolutely precluded from doing so, except London Registry Office to do the work of the I believe the opinion my noble and learned friend through the medium of joint-stock companies whole kingdom? That appears to me to be a has expressed on that point will be generally formed for the purpose of purchasing large question of some difficulty. It is one on which endorsed by all acquainted with the matter. estates with a view of selling them again in small there is a great deal to be said on both sides. It No man could have been better fitted to lots. He would only mention one instance of the sounds very plausible to say that, on the same discharge that duty than Sir Charles Hall, and great expense of acquiring small portions of land. principle which makes us hold that justice I am my noble and learned friend will certain company purchased a cottage and a should be brought home to every man's door, admit that the duty could not have been more couple of acres of land on which it stood, and the dealings with property should be brought as close admirably fulfilled. I am glad to avail myself of cost of the conveyance exceeded the purchaseas possible to the property dealt with, and that, this opportunity to thank the learned Vice-Chan money-amounting to about £130. From the especially in the case of small properties, it is very cellor for the assistance he has rendered in respect second Bill mentioned by his noble and learned desirable that there should be a local office for to this subject. (Hear, hear.) This is not the friend, whereby the time for making claims was doing the business on the spot. But, on the other time, nor, indeed, is it necessary, to go into the further limited, a material advantage would be hand, you must bear in mind what is to be said on points which my noble and learned friend was derived by all owners of property, and it would the other side. Could anyone go further than to quite right to explain, and on which there is some besides tend to promote the success of the larger suggest that there should be a registry in every variance between the Transfer Bill of my noble measure. Up to the present time it was found county of England. But take the case of a large and learned friend and that which I laid upon most difficult to create a feeling in favour of the county, 60 or 80 or 100 miles long, and have the table of your lordships' house last year. In registration of title, owing to the long period of but one office in each county. The consequence the Bill of last year there were three points which years which should elapse before the benefit to will be that persons will often have to go to as I thought cardinal ones. The first was that of be derived from it could
be completely felt. Few great a distance to the registry in their own facility for the registration of all possessory titles, people care for an advantage the full effects county as they would to come to the one in as well as for those which might be established. of which could not be enjoyed until a period of London, and perhaps the communications, as to The second was power to relax the strictness of sixty years had elapsed. He remembered one locomotion, will be more difficult. In addition to the present requirements for a marketable title case in which the assignees of a bankrupt disposed that, you must bear in mind that while the local when the title has been accepted for a period of of property which had been enjoyed for fifty-eight registries are in operation a very large amount of time. The third was the introduction of com- years, and in which case the purchaser lost his dealings with property will be going on in pulsory registration after a reasonable lapse of money. The property in question was derived London. Dealings of this kind will always go time from the passing of the Act. On all points from a person who had made a will believing on to a very large extent, because of the greater I am happy to think that, as between my Bills himself to be owner in fee simple. The property, facilities for them that are to be found in the and those of my noble and learned friend, thero however, as it turned out, was held for three metropolis. The consequence will be that persons is not anything that deserves to be called a lives, and the last of the lives dropped within two from London will have to go down and make substantial difference. (Hear.) It may, be that years of the purchase from the assignees. The examinations at the local registries. What I pro- in the mode in which I proposed to relax the strict length of time to which he had referred had, pose to do is to proceed tentatively. I propose ness of the requirements for a marketable title I beyond doubt, operated as an immense obstacle
in that the London Registry should have within its erred on the side of too much laxity. My noble the way of a general registration of title. The own office district divisions. Should it be found and learned friend proposes to define more exactly details of the Bill would be carefully considered that for any district of the country the transaction the principle on which relaxations will be allowed"; | in committee, but meanwhile he heartily concurred of business is so large as to afford a good prospect and I am willing
to consider whether this may with his noble and learned friend below him in that a registry established in that district would not be a better way of accomplishing the object in wishing them all possible success.-Lord be self-supporting, there will be a power vested view. I am sure, at all events, that the proposals ROMILLY, who was indistinctly heard, was unin the proper authority to order the establish of my noble and learned friend will be a very derstood to anticipate the best possible consement of a local registry in that part of the country. valuable improvement. With respect to com quences from the operation of the Bills, and to I believe that arrangement will meet the wants of pulsion, the difference between my noble and suggest that they should be referred to a select the case. My lords, I have two other Bills to in learned friend and myself, is the difference of a committee. The Bills were then respectively read troduce to your lordships' notice, which are con. single year, and I think I may pass that over. a first time. nected with this subject, but are of a more Upon the subject of local registration I quite
Friday, March 27. limited scope than the one to which I have been concur in the view expressed by my noble and
ATTORNEY AND SOLICITORS' BILL. referring. One of them deals with the question learned friend. There can, I think be no doubt of the limitation of claims and actions regarding that as the measure works it will be found that
On the motion of Lord CHELMSFORD, this Bill real property. By it I propose an alteration of increased
local facilities will become necessary,
was read a second time. the Act 3 & 4 Will. 4, which at present regulates and will require to be afforded; but my present the limitations in respect of suits relating to real impression is that it is a safe principle not only
HOUSE OF COMMONS. property. There are various provisions in that in its application to local registries under this Act by which these limitations as to the bringing measure, but also to all other matters where it is
Thursday, March 26. of suits in respect of real property extend to important to afford reasonable local facilities, to ILLEGAL PRACTICES IN THE CHURCH. twenty years, while in some cases the period is measure the reasonableness by the cost, and
Mr. Holt gave notice that on Tuesday the 31st, ten years. It has been for some time felt as a where the amount of business will probably he will move for leave to introduce a Bill to procrying evil that these periods should be so long. be sufficient to pay its own expenses, in such vide remedies against the introduction or the They are felt to be unnecessarily long; but it is case a very strong claim may be established continuance of practices which are contrary very hard to say what should be the periods of for local facilities. On the other hand, if
to law in churches of the Established Church. limitation. I propose to shorten the period of the amount of business is so trifling that the estwenty years in the Act of Will. 4 to twelve years, tablishing of local registries might tend to throw
BENEFIT BUILDING SOIETIES. and the period of ten years to six. The limita- a great charge upon the public at large, then I
Mr. GOURLEY asked the Home Secretary tion in respect of succession claims, which stands think the burden of proof would lie very strongly whether he intended this
session to introduce a thirty at the utmost. The third of the Bils rement. I am glad also to find that my noble and benefit building societies, and if so, whether such lates to vendors and purchasers, and by it I pro- learned friend has adopted the principle of the Bill would be independent of or comprise a part pose that there should be a change in some parts provision of the Bill of last session with respect of that intended to be introduced for the regulaof the laws, which at present are felt to be in a to limitation, although he has adopted the periods tion of friendly societies.
-Mr. Cross said that very unsatisfactory state. I propose thatif there be of twelve years and six instead of ten and five, since that question had been put upon the paper shonld be sufficient to show, and that the purchaser my noble and learned friend in the reasons which Finsbury that he would introduce a Bill on Mon. shall not be entitled to attested copies of the deeds, he has given for making a change in the direction day next on that subject. The Government, as except at his own expense. There are other pros he has pointed out. There are, at all events, the House were aware, had undertaken to deal visions in this Bill as to the rights of vendors and some reasons in favour of the limitations my noble with friendly societies this year, and until their purchasers in respect of leaseholds, and as to and learned friend proposes, and the proposal Bill was in a more mature state than it was at those of executors and administrators after pay- substantially accomplishes the main object I had present it was impossible for him to give a definite ment of mortgages. Both the latter Bills are in view. The third Bill, which is quite now, and
answer whether they would themselves take in independent of the Registry Bill, though, of course belongs altogether to my noble and learned friend, hand the question of building societies this sesall three measures to your lordships' attention, far as I understand its provisions, it aims at the measure they would bring in with respect to and I will venture to hope that they may find accomplishing a desirable object, and I have no friendly societies. favour with your lordships and become the law of doubt that it will give rise to little difference of
GAS COMPANIES. the land. I do so in view of the interests con- opinion in your lordships' House. I am happy to
Mr. GOLDNEY asked the President of the Board cerned, and because I believe that by passing them think that we now have a real opportunity of taking of Trade whether he would lay upon the table of your lordships will respond to an expression of a very great step-I hope a final and adequate stop the House a copy of the opinion of the law officers hope contained her Majesty's gracious speech. -towards an object of the greatest possible im of the Crown, to the effect that the Board of
The present system has long been a disgrace to portance to the public; one which will relieve our Trade Commissioners, in settling the price of gas our law, and I would ask your lordships to abolish commercial and business transactions from obso- to be paid by the public, are precluded from and remove it. (Cheers.) The noble and learned lete encumbrances, difficulties, delays, and ex. inquiring into the mode in which the gas com.
panies have raised or expended their capital
that they would not affect elections in future. Sir C. ADDERLEY.-There is no such opinion of Leave was given to Mr. WHEELHOUSE to bring some of those points, and notably the mode of the law officers as the question implies. There is in a Bill to abolish certain liabilities now attach, stamping, were matters which might be more fitly an opinion given by Sir J. Karslake, Sir R. ing to innkeepers, and the mossure was road investigated by a select committee than by the Baggallay, and Mr. Round on a question referred a first time.
judges of the land. Bringing such matters before to them as to the powers of the Commissioners
Friday, March 27.
a judge was a costly and slow proceeding. If the appointed by the Board of Trade on the applica
House did not take up the subject now, next tion of the Imperial Gas Company in 1869 to
NEW COURTS OF JUSTICE.
session it would probably be cast aside, the last revise the scale of illuminating powers.
Mr. GREGORY asked the First Commissioner of general election would be more or less out of mind, about to present papers giving the minutes of the Works whether he would lay on the table & controversy in the newspapers would have ceased proceedings of the Commissioners for 1873 and copy of the contract for these courts.Lord H. and these things would be forgotten before a new 1874 as soon as they are concluded, which will LENNOX regretted that he could not accede to election would
occur. The first point to which he include the opinion referred to.
that request. The production of a particular had referred would seem to have arisen from a WEIGHTS AND MEASURES.
contract such as the hon. gentleman specified singular inconsistency in the Act itself. It would Mr. GOLDNEY asked the President of the Board would be injurious to the public service and unjust appear that the Act was loosely drawn, and thereof Trade if he intended introducing a Bill this to the contractors.
fore there was a necessity for revision. The Act session, making provision for the adjustment and
said that the papers should be marked on both sides verification of weights and measures by persous
COUNTY CONSTABLES (SCOTLAND). with tho official mark, and that the voter should other than the police, in accordance with the State for the Home Department whether he siding officer the official mark on the back. It then
Sir W. ANSTRUTHER askod the Secretary of place it in the box after having shown to the presuggestions in the Standard Commissioners' would reconsider the amended rules and regula. said that any paper which was otherwise so marked Report-Lord J. MANNERS was understood to tons for the government of county constables, that the votes could be identified should be say that the report was under the consideration issued from the Home Office by the late Secretary rejected. That showing of the ballot-paper to of the Government, but that they had no.in. of State for that Department, which related to the presiding officer was the only means we had tention of introducing a Bill on the subject this the employment of constables on other than police of checking the Tasmanian dodge." But he session,
duties, and cancel the same, so as to enable the MIDDLESEX SESSIONS BILL. Sir H. SELWIN-IBBETSON, in moving the second the execution of the Public Health (Scotland) Act, in doing the duty imposed upon them by the Act,
was prepared to prove by reference to different police to aid the authorities and officers acting in places that a vast number of presiding officers, reading of this Bill, stated that in acccordance with the 7 & 8 Vict. c. 71, under which the and regulations. Mr. Cross said the Govern. able, such as writing on the back of each paper
as they did prior to the issuing of the said rules did things for which they were properly punishAssistant Judge was appointed, a salary was ment were considering that matter, and he was at the number of the voter on the register. That paid to him ont of the Consolidated Fund of present in communication with the Lord Advocate had occurred in dozens, nay, bundreds of con£1200 & year.
He was allowed, besides per about it. forming his duties as a Judge, to practise as a
stituencies. In doing so those persons clearly barrister, and by the 14 & 15 Vict. c. 55, a second
THE BALLOT ACT.
placed on the voting-paper a pomber by which chairman was allowed to be appointed, with
Sir C. DILKE rose to call attention to the de- the voter could be identified. But those papers the view of facilitating the transaction
the foets in this Act, and to move for a Select Com. were counted, though the Act said they should business. That second chairman was also allowed mittee to investigate its working, with power to not be. They were counted, after argument by to practise as a barrister; but under the 22 & 23 suggest amendments. He disclaimed any idea of competent men, because it was said that those Vict. o. 4, a fresh arrangement was made, the bringing the subject forward as a result of the who were to count the papers should not look at county agreeing to pay a sum of £300 in addition last election, it being generally agreed that hon. the backs, and if they did not they could not to the £1200 paid out of the Consolidated members opposite, who had been returned in a know that the papers were thus marked. He Fund, the Assistant Judge being required to give large majority, did truly represent the opinion of had received a letter from the editor of a paper up practice. Upon the resignation of Sir w. the constituencies. The question which he was in the North of England stating that, by order of Bodkin a short time since, it again became about to submit to the consideration of the House the Sheriff of the county, the presiding officer necessary to deal with the question, and the had been anticipated two years ago, when it was gave to each voter & voting-paper with his own present Bill would give effect to an arrangement repeatedly stated by hon. gentlemen that after registered number upon it. in that way all between the county and the Treasury for the the Act had been tried at one General Election, the voter could be identified. That was a point joint payment of a salary of £1500 a year, the it would be necessary that it should undergo which ought to be investigated by a Select Com. Treasury agreeing to pay the five guineas a day revision. Now, if that was the opinion of many mittee, and which, in London alone, affected han. for & deputy whenever the Assistant Judge hon. members at the time of the passing of the dreds. The second point to which he wished to became incapacitated by illness or other reason. Act, any one who had watched its working at the direct attention was as to the effect on an election able cause from attending to the discharge of his late election could hardly deny that inquiry way of the discrepancy between the number of papers duties. The arrangement was one which had necessary, This was shown by the statements of in the box and the number returned by the been carefully considered, and which would, he men who had conducted elections, by the varions presiding officer. He was present himself at the believed, be advantageous to the county.
questions referred to counsel for opinion, by opening of 53 or 54 boxes, and in every one of The Bill was read a sucond time.
letters in the papers on various points, and notably them there was a slight discrepancy. The abstracby a remarkable correspondence in the Times, in tion of one official voting paper by an elector who
which gentlemen whose authority on the subject took it outside the polling booth instead of putting Mr. LOPES, on leave being given, introduced a Bill to amend the Act of 1854 relating to bills of the meaning of some important clauses in the bribery, because the official stamp might be
would not be questioned took opposite views as to it into the box furnished an easy method of sale, and the measure was read a first time.
Act. He might add, since he had put the notice imitated, or the abstracted paper might be filled
on the books, he had received å very large up under the eye of a briber outside, who, by the Mr. DISRAELI moved the appointment of a number of letters on the subject from almost every help of an agent outside, would be able to ascerSelect Committee on Privilege to inquire into constituency in England. The particular blots tain almost with certainty how a man voted, while and report with regard to the recent committal of to which he wished to call attention were, first, each elector so bribed could bring out an unused Mr. Whalley by the Court of Queen's Bench. the doubts as to what voting papers should be official voting paper. This Tasmanian dodge
An amendment had been put on the paper by admitted and what rejected by reason of some showed the importance of preventing any yoting the hon. member for Peterborough with the informality. The second was a small discrepancy paper from being carried away from the booth. object of adding the Attorney-General and Mr. between the number of papers found in each box Yet in the five elections at which he had been preRoebuck to the Committee, and, there being no and the number returned by the presiding officer, sent he had been the means of stopping voters, objection felt to this alteration, the motion was who was responsible. That point was one of more who, he believed, were quite innocently carrying now submitted with the addition of those two importance than might appear at first sight, away their voting papers. At certain times of names
.--Mr. WHITBREAD, without opposing the because the smallest discrepancy of that kind the day, when the crowding was considerable, motion, pointed out that the course which was admitted of the perpetration of what was well the voting papers might be abstracted easily being pursued raised an entirely new question known as “the Tasmanian dodge.". The third unless the presiding officer was much sharper and might lead in the future to great inconveni. blot was the defective stamping of the voting than some he had seen. Many of the ballot ence. It was desirable that Government should papers. Thousands of papers had been admitted boxes, when opened, were found to contain polling take into consideration the propriety of proposing and counted which, besides the regular official cards or other unofficial documents, and the risk at the beginning of every session the appoint mark, contained also another, which, though it thus disclosed of possible abstraction with a view ment of a carefully-selected Committee of Privi- might not vitiate the vote, yet' might become the to imitate the official stamp was a point which had leges, which would be able to deal promptly means of tracing how the elector had voted. A far better be raised in this House than before an with any case that might arise. Matters of mark very little more than might have been election judge. It was no answer to say that privilege, involving party considerations, might produced by a thumbnail was made in many cases there was no proof of fraud at the recent election. at any time demand their attention, and it would on the voting paper, and that was owing, per. In every constituency, there were plenty of be extremely inconvenient and unsatisfactory in haps, to the different rules which prevailed in scoundrels who did not then know the working of such a case for the Government to name a special different places as to the mode of stamping. the Act or the possibility of plotting with a view committee to deal with it. The best time to Another proper subject of inquiry was as to the to counteract it, as they would at another elecappoint the committee was when there was no mode of numbering the votes. These were the tion. He thought he had shown that if fraud had question of privilege immediately before them. principal matters to which he wished to direct not occurred at the lasi election, it might occur at (Hear, hear.) The resolution was agreed to, the attention, but then there were also two or three a future election; and therefore the House should members of the Committee being-Mr. Disraeli, smaller points which affected the returning officer, provide against any such a contingency. Another Mr. Goschen, the Attorney-General, the Solicitor the most important of which were as to the time matter required investigation-the counting of General, Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen, Mr. Walpole, allowed him in preparing for an election, the votes. This was a point of much importance Mr. Whitbread, Mr. Cave, Sir. C. Forster, Sir S. and as to the returning officer's expenses as af. as affecting the returns. In the great majority of Fitzgerald, Sir H. James, Viscount Holmesdale, fected by the Act. There were two other matters places there were seven or eight presiding officers, Sir E. Colebrooke, Sir G. Montgomery, Mr. which also might be inquired into, the one re- with a clerk to each, but only one agent to watch Massey, Viscount Crichton, and Mr. Roebuck. lating to the evidence we had that votes had the whole process of counting. That being so, The Committee will have power to send for become extensively known, partly through the you could only trust to the honesty of the clerks. persons, papers, and records, and five will be a provisions respecting the 'illiterate voter, and in his opinion the House should lay down rules quorum.
partly through the transparency of the paper for the guidance of the presiding officer in ACTION AGAINST MR. PLIMSOLL. On the motion of Mr. C. LEWIS, it was agreed, the nomination of candidates.
made use of at the elections, the other relating to counting the votes. Again, insufficient time
With regard to was now allowed the returning officers to pre“ That the proper officer of this House have leave the whole subject, he was told it was not the pare for the election. In large boroughs three to attend the forthcoming Liverpool Assizes as a intention of the Government to grant a com- days between the nomination and the polling witness for the defendant in an action in the mittee at this moment, on the ground that we day were quite inadequate to enable the reCourt of Queen's Bench, Houghton and others v. ought to wait for the report of the election judges. turning officer to make the necessary arrangePlimsoll, and to produce any documents in his He regretted that decision, because hardly any of ments, and he had no right to assume that custody which he may be lawfully required to the points he had raised would come before the there would be a contest before the actual produce."
judges, and it was by no means to be assumed 'Domination. In one case a returning officer said
BILLS OF SALE ACT AMENDMENT BILL.
THE COMMITTAL OF MR. WHALLEY.
he had within three days to arrange for 70 polling in small boroughs, to which the Act was to the conclusion that it was for the interest of places, with 300 secret compartments, and appoint specially intended to apply, because in such all members, whether in existence or in posse, that 70 competent presiding officers, with 70 clerks. boroughs it was chiefly needed. For all those diffi: the defects in it should be removed. What might In the competition which existed at an election culties there was but one care-namely, inquiry be the determination of the House on the subject time for clerks possessing the smallest preten. by a committee and amending legislation by Par. of the Ballot when its term of eight years had ex. sions to sobriety, it was very difficult to obtain liament. If, however, he pressed his motion, he pired it was impossible to prejudge ; but it is clear the requisite staff within the limited period feared it would be rejected, and probably by an that those who had opposed it for so long might allowed for the purpose. Another point worthy agreement between him and the concurrent action be proud that they had at longth accepted it, of investigation was the question of the expenses of the two front benches. His hon. friend, the whilst those who had urged its adoption for so of the returning officer. There seemed to be no member for Whitehaven, who had lately fallen many years had found that it had brought deregular scale of charges. Cases had occurred in from his high estate (a langh), and who used, in struction of the party which had carried it into which returning officers had charged no fee at all. criticising such an agreement, to say that both law. ("Hear,” and a laugh.) Thus that which There were other cases in which they had charged front benches must be wrong, would doubtless was to have caused the entire destruction of the 50, 100, or even 200 guineas. The largest fees now, if he went to a division, go into the lobby Conservative party had had exaotly the opposite were not always charged in the largest boroughs, with the members for Bradford and Taunton. The effect, and it was remarkable that, under the Ballot, and he had even heard of cases in which candidates opinion was, he understood, entertained that no
where the Conservative party were strong bewhose return had not been contested were charged action should be taken, at all events, until the fore they were stronger now, and that where 100 guineas for the returning officers' fees, and reports of the election judges were received. He the Liberal party were strong before they now 5 or 60 guineas for their expenses. Another point earnestly hoped, however, that the subject would found their strength diminished. He made these bore upon the means afforded of ascertaining how not be lost sight of. It was one which concerned remarks not for the purpose of rousing party Voters had voted by means of the illiterate voter them all. The right hon. gentleman the member feeling, but to point out that the question might clause. On this point he had received an interest for Bradford had just cause to be proud of the Bill be considered without regard to its bearing ing letter from the mayor of a small borough in When it became law it was as good an Actas, under on either party, and merely with the view of the West of England, who said it was astonish. the circumstances, could well have been passed. making the mechanical operation of voting safe ing to find nearly all the electors in a small Experience, however, had disclosed its defects, and, for both the candidates and their constituents. country parish voting as illiterates. There was that being so, he thought the House would agree (Hear, hear.) One word as to returning officers' reason to fear that this provision in the Ballot Act with him that the Act was deserving of revision expenses. (Hear, hear.) Anything more un. had been made use of to ascertain how the electors at the hands of a select committee. (Hear, hear.) satisfactory than the present system for honest had voted, and this impression was strengthened -Mr. C. LEWIS had no doubt that the House returning officers and for the unfortunate candi. by the fact that in the large boroughs, where it were desirous that the Ballot Act should be made dates he could not conceive. The honest returning was not an object to ascertain how a man voted, as perfect as possible in their own interests and in officer in a large constituency was obliged to there was hardly any illiterates. In one of the the interests of the constituencies of the country work night and day without receiving the largest wards in Chelsea two persons only availed generally. It was very desirable that the loss of smallest remuneration for his labour unless it themselves of the provision as to illiterate voters, votes should be prevented, and accurracy in took the form of an honorarium from the winning many illiterate pereons preferring to vote by the counting votes should be secured. It was only or perhaps all the candidates. Thus the relight of nature rather than by the hand of the necessary for him to remind the House that not turning officer for Marylebone had had to work returning officer. Again, the transparency of the fewer than twelve members of the House had for a week and a half, night and day, at the last voting paper enabled an agent to see for whom been returned by majorities of ten and ander, general election, during which time he was unable the voter had polled. A country returning officer and that twenty-four members had obtained ma- to attend to his business, and all returning officers had written to him to the effect that, without at jorities of twenty or under.
These facts were were obliged to work in a similar manner if they all wishing to see how voters had given their sufficient to show that precision and accuracy wished to escape the odiam which had fallen apon votes, he could not help seeing, owing to the were of the utmost iinportance, and that the the returning officer of another of the great transparency of the material, in conseqnence of power of the returning officer for good or bad metropolitan boroughs. It was most unsatisfacwhich any bystander could read through the reasons to reject voting papers which had some tory when the returning officer had to pat folded paper. That, too, was a matter which peculiarity in them-without decision or autho- down a fee for himself, and it was equally undeserved investigation. The most important rity to guide him-was a subject which deserved satisfactory when he had to accept that as question, however, was, what was the mark by consideration. (Hear, hear.) In reference to a gift which he ought to receive as the legiti. which & voter could be identified ? The Act the loss of votes, he might say that at the late mate reward of his labour. In other cases he stated that all yoting papers should be rejected election for Coleraine, out of a total of 1100 votes, heard that monstrons charges had been made which did not bear a particular mark, and the no fewer than 190 were rejected by the returning in small boroughs, and in one instance where the question was,,,What constituted such a mark ? officer. The returning officer, in fact, possessed candidate, who was called a Conservative working When the Bill was in the course of passing enormous powers, and much depended not only man's candidate had refused to pay the returning through the House different views
on his honesty and integrity, but upon his intelli- officer the sum of £50, the returning officer had pressed on the subject by different members. gence and his accurate reading of the provisions refused to allow him to be nominated, and the Some hon. members took the strict view of the Act. This was a point on which both noble lord who was the other candidate, was reof the provisions of the Bill, as did many sides of the House and both large and small turned as unopposed, the consequence being that other authorities of great weight-namely, that constituencies were equally interested, and it was a petition had been presented on behalf of the reonly the mark given in the schedule should be highly expedient, in order to secure the purity of jected candidate. There were, he believed, made by the voter, and that any other mast lead our electoral system, that steps should be taken numbers of cases of that character which were á to the rejection of the vote. The right hon. gen. to obtain uniformity of procedure at elections. scandal and a discredit to the law. Another thing tleman the member for Bradford, who had charge Under the present mode of taking the ballot he complained of was that the first set of candiof the Bill took a different view, and after a great there was every inducement held out to dishonest dates should be compelled to pay for the ballot deal of debating upon the point, the Bill passed returning officers to act improperly. Thus in a boxes, which would suffice for their own con. into law without auy authoritative definition being county constituency which should be nameless, an stituencies for the next twenty or thirty years. given as to what was meant by the words of the hon. friend of his who had been elected by a In some instances candidates had merely hired clause in question. For his part, he believed that small majority of fifty-three or fifty four in 1868 the boxes, but the bire was probably more expen. all the elaborate provisions of the Act to secure was returned by a large majority in 1874. At the sive than the purchase of them would have been. non-identification of the voter could be readily recent election one of the friends of the candidate He thought that the facts which had been made evaded if any other mark were allowed but that who was present at the counting of the votes had public, coupled with the individual experience of which was to be found in the schedule. In small a suspicion that one of the clerks who was entering hon.members, wouldinduce the Government to take boroughs it was impossible to prevent the identi. the number of votes in a book was manipulating the question up, and take steps to put an end to the fication of voters. By puncturing the paper with the counting-that was to say, he was omitting a present slovenly and inaccurate mode of counting a pencil, by the mark of a dirty thumb, by tearing batch of thirty votes in favour of the candidate in the votes, and he was satisfied that any measure off a small piece of the corner, and in various question. On being challenged with the offence that might be proposed would receive the careful other ways a dishonest or unscrupulous agent the clerk expressed great indignation at his attention of the select committee of that House to could easily ascertain how particular persons had honour being so assailed, but on the votes being which it might be referred. (Hear, hear.) Poted. If it were found on inquiry, as he thought compared with the book in which he was entering Mr. GREGORY said that whenever a committee it would be, that these elaborate provisious of the the nbei voters, it was found that not one was appointed it would be necessary to consider Act were useless for the purpose for which they but two batches of thirty votes in favour of the the question of the expenses of returning officers, were intended, surely they ought to be discarded particular candidate had been omitted. It might who could not proceed for their recovery against or amended? They had been read two different be said that that was a fault on the part of a certain the nominated candidates, but only against those ways at the late election, and that fact alone was clerk and not of the system, but when it was who went to the poll. The question of the expenses sufficient to justify the interference of the House. recollected how various were the modes of counting charged by returning officers for themselves was In the borough of Chelsea hundreds of voting the votes, some of them being of the loosest cha- also deserving of attention. Mr. FORSTER said papers were put aside for further consideration racter, and how impossible it was in very large that he considered the difficulties would continue under the name of “duffers.” Finally they came constituencies that the candidates could exercise until the constituencies themselves bore the to the conclusion what should be done with those proper supervision over the counting, it appeared necessary expenses of elections. The discus. papers, and, as it did not interfere with the to him that at the proper time-which he was not sion then terminated. result of the election, he might mention that he prepared to say the present was—the House should had a considerable majority of the “ duffers," give the question its minute and impartial inveg.
Tucsday, March 31. while his hon. colleague opposite had a large tigation. (Hear, hear.) His own constituency
THE COMMITMENT OF MR, WHALLEY. majority of what were called the “ hopeless being a small one, every vote had been counted Mr. WALPOLE brought up the report of the duffers.” (A laugh.) The decision that was under the supervision of the candidates them- Select Committee on Privilego, to which had been arrived at in Chelsea was to count all the papers selves; but in large constituencies such scenos referred the letter of the Lord Chief Justice
to which were so marked as to give a clear indication had been witnessed as seven or eight sets of the Speaker informing the House of the comof the
intention of the voter. A different prin persons being engaged in the same room in mitment of Mr. Whalley, one of its members, for çiple was, however, adopted in other metropolitan counting the votes, the names of the candidates contempt of court. The committee had had boroughs and in various other constituencies, and the votes given on each ballot-paper being before it two orders made by the Court of Queen's and the consequence was that thousands of voters shouted out in such a way as must almost Bench in the case of the Queen against Castro. were virtually disfranchised. The town clerk of inevitably lead to confusion and mistakes. A By the first of these orders Mr. G. H.Whalley, then Swansea informed him that he actually advised trifling mistake in the numbers of the votes and now one of the members for Peterborough, was the mayor, who was the returning officer-one given for a particular candidate might be ordered to appear in court to answer for his con. way, when his opinion was the other. He was of of the gravest importance, because in many of tempt, in writing and printing a letter in the opinion that any mark which clearly showed how our largest constituencies members had been re- Daily News on the 21st Jan. last. By the the voter desired to voto was a good mark; but turned by merely the nominal majorities of 50, second he was adjudged to have been
guilty connsel whom he consalted thought differently, 100, or 200. Having had personal experience twice of such contempt, and thereupon ordered to and consequently many votes were rejected be of a contested
election under the ballot, he had pay a fine of £250, and to be imprisoned in Hol. cause they were not marked with a Maltese cross. taken somo little trouble to inquire into the loway Gaol until it was paid. The orders with This part of the subject was of special importance 'working of the present system, and he had come the affidavits and exhibits on which they were
founded were printed in the appendix to the Com- interests by increasing the number of transac- the judges thereto. We are sorry we have mittee's report. The committee had afforded to tions in real property." We think we can take never before been afforded the opportunity, as we Mr. Whalley an opportunity of making such upon ourselves to say that his Lordship rightly might have months ago, of bringing this important observations on the matter referred to them as he understands the feelings of our branch of the subject to the notice of the Profession. It is, desired to offer, and he had put in a written state- profession in reference to this important measure. however, due to the council of the Incorporated ment, parts of which appeared to the Committee As to how far it will answer the expectations Law Society to say that it is a measure prepared to be irrelevant to the specific objects of their of its promoters, it would at present be unwise to by them. We observe that the meeting was held inquiry, but they had not thought it expedient to venture a prediction, except that it, in conjunc- at the offices of Mr. Thomas Marshall, M.A., omit any of the observations which that gentle- tion with the two other measures introduced by solicitor, of Leeds, and registrar of the County man had deemed it essential to place before them. his Lordship at the same time, will work a complete Court there, and seeing that he is the honorary The Committee, in conclusion, having considered change in the whole system of conveyancing secretary and treasurer, we suppose we are not the matters referred to them, did not think they throughont the country. Some of the redeeming far from wrong in assuming that the greater were such as to demand the further attention of features in the measure to which we first refer burden of the work of the society falls upon his the House; and they desired also to express are, that the registry is, in the first instance, at all shoulders; and it is not surprising to observe their opinion that the Lord Chief Justice had events, to be in London only, as to which we feel from the report that he has again been elected to fulfilled his duty in informing the House that one sure that it will so continue, for a distribution of the office of honorary secretary. Mr. Marshall is of its members had been committed by the Court registries throughout the country would be almost one of the newly elected members of the council of Queen's Bench. (Hear, hear.)
sure to lead to expenses not contemplated by the of the Incorporated Law Society, in connection measure in question. Again, the measure will with which he promises to render valuable ser. not be compulsory for the first three years, but | vices to the Profession.
we are afraid the sanguine hope of his Lordship, SOLICITORS' JOURNAL.
that within this period a great deal of business In the midst of a louder complaint than has
will be done by virtue of the Act, will prove for some time past been made upon the subTHE Attorneys and Solicitors Bill 1874, which illusory; another recommendation is that even ject of the encroachments of accountants, and has already been read a second time in the House after tao expiration of three years, if land was agents of all kinds, who talk about their clients of Lords, proposes to amend the 10th section of not registered, the sale of it is not to be void, but and the long vacation, &c., &c., comes to as a the Attorneys Act of 1860, by excepting from its the purchaser is to obtain only an equitable title, letter from a country solicitor, pointing out that operarion articled clerks who are engaged in and not a legal one until he does register. We large numbers of solicitors, to use his phrase, employment (otherwise than under their articles) fear any attempt to make the existing office of “work in with accountants," and that but for this with the written consent of their principals, toge- land registry in Middlesex capable of meeting practice, which largely obtains, accountants could ther with the sanction of one of the Judges of the the requirements of the Act are likely to prove never have got the hold they have on certain Superior Courts, and on certain other conditions. abortive, and we regret that the measure in queso kinds of work which one wonld rather expect to This Bill also requires that previous notice, toge- tion does not provide for the establishment of find in solicitors' offices. We are afraid there is ther with copies of affidavits, &c., shall be given a Landed Estates Court. One of the most im. too much truth in the assertions of our correto the registrar of attorneys before any applica- portant questions not touched upon by his spondent to be reflected upon with anything like tion shall be made to strike an attorney off the Lordship is, who is to have the right to search satisfaction; and such being the case, it is clear roll, and contains other important provisions on
the registry, and above all who is to have the that solicitors have, in a measure, themselves to this subject. In another column we produce the right to act in the matter of registrations. It blame, by tempting others to step out of the substance of this measure.
will be remembered that in a similar measure of groove of their regular calling.
often appeared in relation to registration, &c. A CASE has recently come to our knowledge in The resclution moved at an adjourned special Solicitors will require a distinct understanding which a firm of accountants undertook, on behalf genoral meeting of the Incorporated Law Society, upon this important point. Already the Profes- of a debtor, to arrange with his creditors by pay. held on the 11th Jane last, by Mr. Charles Ford, sion, which is heavily taxed, is beset on all sides ment of 108. in the pound, and to prepare the and seconded by Mr. Rose, to the effect that a by invaders, who indulge in their depredations to general meeting of the members of the society almost any extent, while no effort has been made necessary documents for that purpose. An agreeshould be held periodically, say every month, with to arrest their progress. The Bar of England is ment was prepared, which was signed by credi. certain exceptions, for the discussion of all strongly represented in both Houses of Parlia- respective debts in discharge. One creditor who matters affecting the interests of the Profession, ment, and unless such members of it show by had signed it afterwards proceeded to recover the though negatived without a division, would, we their sympathy and support that solicitors belong full amount by an action at law, when it was certainly think, be very desirable, for, besides to one and the same profession as themselves, the found that the agreement was not stamped, was giving to every member an opportunity of venti present Lord Chancellor, not less than any of his not under seal, and was more than two months solicitors, it would clearly operate as discounting of the Profession to support any measure which old in point of date. The accountants' client pays ence, which, however desirable and necessary Land Transfer and Titles Bill. The second Bill this kind of evil by a paternal Government? the chances of new societies coming into exist so immediately affects their interests as does the the penalty, of course, but ought not the public
to be afforded some kind of protection against their formation and establishment may be, yet introduced by his Lordship dealt with the limita, tend to diminish the influence of the chief society. tion of suits, the general tendency of the Bill Let the policy of the council of that society be being to shorten such period in ail cases. The Next week being Easter week the instruction for diametrically opposite to the policy which ani. third Bill to amend the law of vendors and articled clerks at the Law Institution is confined mates the benchers of the Inns of Court ; let purchasers is of great importance to solicitors, to one lecture on equity, which will be delivered solicitors have every opportunity of discussing all and we feel sure that this measure, not less than on Friday, the 10th April, between the hours of questions affecting the Profession, and let us have the other two, will receive the most careful, and six and seven o'clock, being the first of the a thorough system of representation and organi indeed laboured, consideration of the council of equity series for this year. Lecturer and reader sation. It is astonishing that while Universities the Incorporated Law Society. We confess it Mr. C. W. Chute. and many professions are practically represented seems to us that the reasonable construction that in the House of Commons, a powerful but dis. the Land Transfer and Title Bill, if it becomes COMPLAINT having recently been made in our organised body like solicitors enjoy no such privi. law in its present shape, points to the conclusion columns that some solicitors in certain parts of lege; but we hope the time is not far distant when that
many of the provisions last introduced by the country, as well as in London, are so forgetful steps will be taken to accomplish so desirable an his Lordship will be rendered nugatory. The of the duties they owe to our Profession, as to object. There are questions innumerable which general tendency of the measure, however, seems allow their names to be used by unqualified solicitors would be glad of an opportunity of to be to relieve vendors and throw considerable persons, thus praetically enabling the latter to considering; and if there is no other way open to burdens on purchasers, and in this sense it is act as attorneys, we reproduce below the 32nd them, we think it should be by general support of opposed to the policy embodied in the more section of 6 & 7 Vict. c. 73. We hope no time the Legal Practitioners' Society, the subscription important measure first before referred to. The will be lost in measures being taken to bring such to which is nominal, it being understood that council of the Incorporated Law Society must cases under the notice of the Incorporated Law general meetings should be constantly held, all feel that a great responsibility devolves upon Society. It should however be observed that it is resolutions come to at such meetings to be for them in having to represent our branch of the open to any society or individual to apply to the warded to the council of the Incorporated Law Profession in considering these three measures, court as provided by this section. And be it Society for their consideration, and, in case of no the more so as any recommendations of theirs are enacted, that if any attorney or solicitor shall action being taken in the matter, the new society certain to receive the most careful attention of wilfully and knowingly act as agent in any action reserving to itself the alternative of taking inde- the Government.
or suit in any court of law or equity, or matter in pendent steps.
bankruptcy, for any person not duly qualified to We have received a report of the proceedings of act as an attorney or solicitor as aforesaid, or THE Chambers of Commerc3, by reason of their the annual general meeting of the Incorporated permit or suffer his name to be anyways made use recent deliberations (a portion of the report of Leeds Law Society. The meeting was held as long of in any such action, suit, or matter upon the which has already appeared in our columns), since as the 20th Feb. last, and from the report account or for the profit of any unqualified person, may well set all lawyers by the ears. The follow- of the committee for the year 1873, which is of or send any process to such unqualified person, or ing matters were brought to the notice of the some length, we gather that the number of the do any other act, thereby to enable such unquali. commercial men so assembled : Bankruptcy Law members of the society has increased, that the fied person to appear, act, or practise in any Amendment, Public Prosecutors, Patent Law, funds of the society are in a satisfactory state ; respect as an attorney or solicitor in any suit at Tribunals of Commerce, Unjust operation of the and the report included a consideration of the law or in equity, knowing such person not to be duly Debtors' Act 1869, Married Women's Property questions submitted to the society by the Judica- qualified as aforesaid, and complaint shall be made Act, and other legal subjects. It is a matter for ture Commissioners; also the subject of the thereof in a summary, way to any of the said much congratulation that the commercial world is Supreme Court of Judicature Act; the subject Superior Courts wherein such attorney or solicitor found so ready to deliberate on the subject of all of professional remuneration, the amalgamation has been admitted, and proof made thereof upon statutory legislation, accomplished or contem. of the Incorporated Law Society and the Metro- oath to the satisfaction of the court that such plated.
politan and Provincial Law Association (since attorney or solicitor hath wilfully and knowingly
accomplished); registration of mortgages of offended therein as aforesaid, then and in such The Lord Chancellor, on introducing into the tenants’ fixtures; the Inns of Court and School case every such attorney or solicitor offending House of Lords his Land Transfer and Title Bill, of Law Bill, prepared by Lord Selborne ; the sub- shall and may be struck off the roll, and for ever was thus reported, when speaking of solicitors : ject of a Bill to amend the law relating to attor. after disabled from practising as an attorney or Although it was said that such a Bill would be neys and solicitors, the
principal object being to solicitor : and in that case, and upon such com. opposed by the solicitors, he did not believe that modify the 10th section of the Attorneys' Act plaint and
proof made as aforesaid, it shall and that branch of the Legal Profession which was for 1860, by enabling articled clerks to hold offices
or may be lawful to and for the said court to commit the most part composed of enlightened and liberal- engage in employments other than the employ. such unqualified person so acting
or practising as minded men would set themselves against a ment of clerks, provided before entering on the aforesaid to the prison of the said court, without measure which was found to be beneficial to their office they obtain the consent of the solicitor to bail or mainprize, for any term not exceeding one clients, and would also conduce to their own' whom they are bound and the sanction of one of year."