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32. Requisites of a valid indorsement.

33. Conditional indorsement.

34. Indorsement in blank and special indorsement

35. Restrictive indorsement.

36. Negotiation of over-due or dishonoured bill.

37. Negotiation of bill to party already liable thereon.

38. Rights of the holder.

General duties of the Holder.

39. When presentment for acceptance is necessary.

40. Time for presenting bill payable after sight.

41. Rules as to presentment for acceptance, and excuses for nonpresentment.

42. Non-acceptance.

43. Dishonour by non-acceptance and its consequences.

44. Duties as to qualified acceptances.

45. Rules as to presentment for payment.

46. Excuses for delay or non-presentment for payment.

47. Dishonour by non-payment.

48. Notice of dishonour and effect of non-notice.

49. Rules as to notice of dishonour.

50. Excuses for non-notice and delay.

51. Noting or protest of bill.

52. Duties of holder as regards drawee or acceptor.

Liabilities of Parties.

53. Funds in hands of drawee.

54. Liability of acceptor.

55. Liability of drawer or indorser.

56. Stranger signing bill liable as indorser.

57. Measure of damages against parties to dishonoured bill.

58. Transferor by delivery and transferee.

Discharge of Bill.

59. Payment in due course.

60. Banker paying demand draft whereon indorsement is forged. 61. Acceptor the holder at maturity.

62. Express waiver.

63. Cancellation.

64. Alteration of bill.

Acceptance and Payment for Honour.

65. Acceptance for honour suprà protest.
66. Liability of acceptor for honour.
67. Presentment to acceptor for honour.
68. Payment for honour suprà protest.

Lost Instruments.

69. Holder's right to duplicate of lost bill. 70. Action on lost bill.

Bill in a Set.

71. Rules as to sets.

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76. General and special crossings defined.

77. Crossing by drawer or after issue.

78. Crossing a material part of cheque.

79. Duties of banker as to crossed cheques.

80. Protection to banker and drawer where cheque is crossed. 81. Effect of crossing on holder.

82. Protection to collecting banker.



83. Promissory note defined.

84. Delivery necessary.

85. Joint and several notes.

86. Note payable on demand.

87. Presentment of note for payment. 88. Liability of maker.

89. Application of Part II. to notes.


90. Good faith.

91. Signature.

92. Computation of time.

93. When noting equivalent to protest. 94. Protest when notary not accessible. 95. Dividend warrants may be crossed.

96. Repeal.

97. Savings.

98. Saving of summary diligence in Scotland.

99. Construction with other Acts, &c.

100. Parole evidence allowed in certain judicial proceedings in




A.D. 1882.

Short title.

Interpretation of terms.

Bill of exchange defined.

NOTE TO STUDENTS: be followed up carefully. in italics in the relative

In studying the Act the cross references should These, and various additional notes, are inserted sections for guidance.

Chapter 61.

An Act to codify the law relating to Bills of Exchange, Cheques,
and Promissory Notes.
[18th August 1882.]


OE it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:


1. This Act may be cited as the Bills of Exchange Act, 1882.

2. In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,


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Acceptance means an acceptance completed by delivery or notification.

64 Action" includes counter-claim and set-off.

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Banker includes a body of persons whether incorporated or not who carry on the business of banking.

Bankrupt" includes any person whose estate is vested in a trustee or assignee under the law for the time being in force relating to bankruptcy.

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Bearer means the person in possession of a bill or note which is payable to bearer.

Technically, the possessor of a bill or note payable to order is not the bearer of it.

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Bill means bill of exchange, and "note" means promissory note. "Delivery means transfer of possession, actual or constructive, from one person to another. (Refer to section 21.)

"Holder means the payee or indorsee of a bill or note who is in possession of it, or the bearer thereof.

"Indorsement means an indorsement completed by delivery.

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39 Issue means the first delivery of a bill or note, complete in form to a person who takes it as a holder.

66 Person

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includes a body of persons whether incorporated or not. Value means valuable consideration. (See section 27.) "Written includes printed, and "writing" includes print.



Form and Interpretation.

3. (1.) A bill of exchange is an unconditional order in writing, addressed by one person to another, signed by the person giving it, requiring the person to whom it is addressed to pay on demand or at a fixed or determinable future time a sum certain in money to or to the order of a specified person, or to bearer.

(2.) An instrument which does not comply with these conditions, or which orders any act to be done in addition to the payment of money, is not a bill of exchange.

(3.) An order to pay out of a particular fund is not unconditional within the meaning of this section; but an unqualified order to pay, coupled with (a) an indication of a particular fund out of which the

drawee is to re-imburse himself or a particular account to be debited with the amount, or (b) a statement of the transaction which gives rise to the bill, is unconditional.

(4.) A bill is not invalid by reason

(a.) That it is not dated;

(b.) That it does not specify the value given, or that any value has been given therefor;

(c.) That it does not specify the place where it is drawn or the place where it is payable.

4. (1.) An inland bill is a bill which is or on the face of it purports Inland and to be (a) both drawn and payable within the British Islands, or (b) drawn foreign bills. within the British Islands upon some person resident therein. Any other bill is a foreign bill.

For the purposes of this Act "British Islands mean any part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, the islands of Man, Guernsey, Jersey, Alderney, and Sark, and the islands adjacent to any of them being part of the dominions of Her Majesty.

(2.) Unless the contrary appear on the face of the bill the holder may treat it as an inland bill.

Effect where

different parties to

5. (1.) A bill may be drawn payable to, or to the order of, the drawer; or it may be drawn payable to, or to the order of, the drawee. (2.) Where in a bill drawer and drawee are the same person, or where bill are the the drawee is a fictitious person or a person not having capacity to contract, the holder may treat the instrument, at his option, either as a bill of exchange or as a promissory note.

same person.

6. (1.) The drawee must be named or otherwise indicated in a bill Address to with reasonable certainty.

(2.) A bill may be addressed to two or more drawees whether they are partners or not, but an order addressed to two drawees in the alternative or to two or more drawees in succession is not a bill of exchange.

7. (1.) Where a bill is not payable to bearer, the payee must be named or otherwise indicated therein with reasonable certainty. (2.) A bill may be made payable to two or more payees jointly, or it may be made payable in the alternative to one of two, or one or some of several payees. A bill may also be made payable to the holder of an office for the time being.

(3.) Where the payee is a fictitious or non-existing person the bill may be treated as payable to bearer.

8. (1.) When a bill contains words prohibiting transfer, or indicating an intention that it should not be transferable, it is valid as between the parties thereto, but is not negotiable.

(2.) A negotiable bill may be payable either to order or to bearer. (3.) A bill is payable to bearer which is expressed to be so payable, or on which the only or last indorsement is an indorsement in blank. (4.) A bill is payable to order which is expressed to be so payable, or which is expressed to be payable to a particular person, and does not contain words prohibiting transfer or indicating an intention that it should not be transferable.

(5.) Where a bill, either originally or by indorsement, is expressed to be payable to the order of a specified person, and not to him or his order, it is nevertheless payable to him or his order at his option.


Certainty required as to payee.

What bills are nego


9. (1.) The sum payable by a bill is a sum certain within the meaning Sum payable. of this Act, although it is required to be paid

(a.) With interest.

(b.) By stated instalments.

(c.) By stated instalments, with a provision that upon default in payment of any instalment the whole shall become due.

Bill payable on demand.

Bill payable at a future time.

Omission of date in bill payable after date.


and postdating.

Computation of time of payment.

34 & 35 Vict. c. 17.

(d.) According to an indicated rate of exchange or according to a rate of exchange to be ascertained as directed by the bill.

Cp. the British custom of drawing bills payable at Exchange as per indorsement."

(2.) Where the sum payable is expressed in words and also in figures, and there is a discrepancy between the two, the sum denoted by the words is the amount payable.

(3.) Where a bill is expressed to be payable with interest, unless the instrument otherwise provides, interest runs from the date of the bill, and if the bill is undated from the issue thereof.

Interest under this subsection does not mean interest as damages on dishonour. (See section 57.)

10. (1.) A bill is payable on demand

(a.) Which is expressed to be payable on demand, or at sight, or on presentation; or

(b.) In which no time for payment is expressed.

(2.) Where a bill is accepted or indorsed when it is overdue, it shall, as regards the acceptor who so accepts, or any indorser who so indorses it, be deemed a bill payable on demand.

Refer to sections 14, 36 (3), 45 (2), 60 and 73.

11. A bill is payable at a determinable future time within the meaning of this Act which is expressed to be payable—

(1.) At a fixed period after date or sight.

Sections 14 (2) (3), 18 (3), and 65 (5) indicate how the due date is determined.

(2.) On or at a fixed period after the occurrence of a specified event which is certain to happen, though the time of happening may be uncertain.

An instrument expressed to be payable on a contingency is not a bill, and the happening of the event does not cure the defect.

12. Where a bill expressed to be payable at a fixed period after date is issued undated, or where the acceptance of a bill payable at a fixed period after sight is undated, any holder may insert therein the true date of issue or acceptance, and the bill shall be payable accordingly.

Provided that (1) where the holder in good faith and by mistake inserts a wrong date, and (2) in every case where a wrong date is inserted, if the bill subsequently comes into the hands of a holder in due course the bill shall not be avoided thereby, but shall operate and be payable as if the date so inserted had been the true date.

13. (1.) Where a bill or an acceptance or any indorsement on a bill is dated, the date shall, unless the contrary be proved, be deemed to be the true date of the drawing, acceptance, or indorsement, as the case may be.

(2.) A bill is not invalid by reason only that it is ante-dated or postdated, or that it bears date on a Sunday.

14. Where a bill is not payable on demand the day on which it falls due is determined as follows:

(1.) Three days, called days of grace, are, in every case where the bill itself does not otherwise provide, added to the time of pay. ment as fixed by the bill, and the bill is due and payable on the last day of grace: Provided that

(a.) When the last day of grace falls on Sunday, Christmas Day, Good Friday, or a day appointed by Royal proclamation as a public fast or thanksgiving day, the bill is, except in the case herein-after provided for, due and payable on the preceding business day;

(b.) When the last day of grace is a bank holiday (other than Christmas Day or Good Friday) under the Bank Holidays Act, 1871, and Acts amending or extending it, or when the

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