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tution and laws of the United States, shall forfeit its right to do business in that State. Whether the proposition that a corporation always remains, for jurisdictional purposes, a citizen of the State where chartered, though it may become permanently domiciled in another State, be sound or not, yet it is assuredly contrary to public policy to make the exercise of a constitutional privilege the ground of forfeiture of anything, much less of a license already granted. And such seems the tendency of the recent decision of the Supreme Court of the United States, in Barron v. Burnside, 121 U. S., 199, qualifying or limiting what was said in Doyle v. Continental Ins. Co., 94 U. S., 535.

We have associations of railroad agents, of locomotive engineers, of knights of labor, of lawyers, of doctors, of bakers, of shoemakers, in fact, of representatives of every class of business, and why exclude insurance agents and underwriters ? Surely, in union there is strength, and if the people of a State can unite to exclude every insurance company who will issue any other than a valued policy, the representatives of companies may concentrate into a body for the purpose of maintaining and adjusting rates.

(3.) Where the insurance business is transacted under a valued policy law, one of two results must inevitably follow, either a heavy increase in the rate of premium charged, to which I will refer in conclusion, or great loss to the companies. Of course, as was pointedly remarked by a prominent statesman, who was opposing the increase of the pay of public officers in his State, “if they don't like the whisky they can just pour it back in the jug,” in other words, resign-so insurance companies can withdraw from such territory as is oppressed with the incubus of such a law.

But assuming that they did not withdraw, the first injustice to which I refer is the compulsion they are under to transact business not contemplated by their charters other than in exceptional cases. “A valued policy is utterly meaningless,

unless it contemplates giving the owner more than the cash value of his property,” succinctly says the Weekly Underwriter. And to afford more than indemnity was never anticipated in the grant of corporate privileges to insurance companies. If the insured is only to have, in event of loss, the real market value of his property, provided it does not exceed the amount of the policy, he is already fully protected by the contract itself, independent of any law.

Secondly, It involves a radical change in the methods of doing business, because no company can afford to issue valued policies, without a careful appraisal, in advance, of

every risk.

Thirdly, It will have been observed by any intelligent lawyer who has devoted much of his time to the defense of cases against fire insurance companies that the only possible way to obtain for them even an appearance of justice, where matters of fact are involved, is in securing by the verdict a reduction in the amount called for by the policy. The representatives of the company-adjuster, agent, and counselmay be satisfied beyond peradventure that the loss was the result of arson, and yet may have been unable to obtain evidence sufficient to convict. Without testimony which will exclude every reasonable doubt, no matter what may be the charge of the court, a verdict for the defendant cannot be obtained. Cases which clearly indicate arson are, with but few exceptions, accompanied by over-valuations, misrepresentations, etc. By uniting the two defenses, juries, who would never consent to find a verdict based upon arson, may frequently be induced to reduce the loss to the minimum which the evidence will justify. Thus thousands of dollars are annually saved in the few cases which are litigated from the grasp of men who there is every reason to suppose burned their own property. Crime is not usually committed by daylight, in the presence of witnesses, and of all violations of the

Penal Codes of the States, none is more difficult to detect than arson. Direct evidence is not to be had, and when circumstantial evidence is relied upon, unless it excludes every other reasonable hypothesis than the guilt of the defendant, conviction is impossible.

Where the valued policy law is of force, this mode of defense is unavailing, because there must be a verdict for the defendant upon the ground of arson, or because the policy is void, or for the insured, finding the full amount.

Fourthly, on account of the depreciation that is constantly resulting from causes too numerous to be enumerated, term policies must be either abandoned, or the property insured far below its real value at the inception of the contract. This will be true, to a less extent, as to annual policies.

(4.) The valued policy law constitutes a Hydra-head of evils to the general public, some of which I will enumerate. The first experiment in this class of legislation was made by the State of Wisconsin, in the year 1874. Ohio and Texas followed in 1879, then the Territory of Idaho, and lastly New Hampshire, in August, 1885. Experience under its operation in Idaho led the Territorial Legislature to repeal the law at its last session. Bills embracing the valued policy feature have been introduced into the Legislatures of nearly all the States of the American Union, and, with the exception of Wisconsin, Ohio, Texas, and New Hampshire, after stubborn debate, have either been defeated or withdrawn. In Minnesota the bill was vetoed by the Governor.

The first deleterious effect of such a law is, either an immense temptation to crime, or the assumption of a large proportion of the risk to be carried by the owner himself. The crime to which this experimental legislation principally leads is, unfortunately, one that involves the innocent in possible ruin, while it enables the guilty to perpetrate successful robbery. This disastrous result, by a large increase of ex

pense, and by forcing the insured to carry a considerable portion of the risk, may be avoided, but in case of fire, again at the cost of the innocent.

Again, the increased expense will inevitably result in an increased rate of premium. If the valued policy law be confined to buildings, no company could afford to take risks thereon, without having careful appraisement, and this must be charged to the property owner. Thus it operates harshly upon the latter in decreasing the amount of his insurance, while it increases the rate of premium. Experience in Wisconsin and Ohio has demonstrated such to be the fact in the increase of the ratio of loss to risk, and of loss to premium. New Hampshire during the current year, seems to be evincing an unusual facility and capacity for combustion. I shall spare my audience the infliction of insurance tables showing percentages, ratios, etc., but simply state that an examination of them, covering the short period that the experimental law has been in force, will show that rates and losses have both largely increased, whilst the resulting loss to the uninsured has been enormous.

As stated heretofore, I see no reason why companies cannot successfully operate under a valued policy law, provided the public is prepared to meet the largely increased expense.

“ Before the war," to use the current phrase of the day, the young scion of a wealthy American family went abroad to complete the education of which his fond parents had never had the advantage. Upon his return, his mother asked him what, of all he had seen in his travels, he deemed the most desirable? With the enthusiasm of exuberant youth, he replied, “Oh, mother, Paris—Paris, of course." The old lady immediately exclaimed, with a heart full of affection : "I buy 'em for you, my child; I buy 'em right off.”

So if the public wish valued policy laws, they are within easy reach, for the Legislatures can enact them, but the people must bear the expense. This expense I consider an absolute waste of money, and with no corresponding benefit. To

enact them in order to repress the evils of over-insurance, does not evince the exercise of that calm wisdom which should characterize legislation, because the same result could be reached by a law that the insured should never recover more than a fractional part of the cash value of his property at the time of the fire. The effect of such an enactment would not leave a greater margin uncovered than will inevitably result from the operation of the valued policy law, when the methods of business of the companies shall have been thoroughly readjusted to meet its requirements.

From the origin of insurance, down to the present day, whether we are indebted for it to the Phænicians, the Carthaginians, the Greeks, the Romans, the Jews, the Lombards, or the Venetians; whether it belongs to an age more remote or was first known in the Thirteenth Century, indemnity-compensation for loss sustained-has been of the very essence of the contract. From the auspicious moment of its birth, the lawfully begotten child of peace, commerce and civilization, it was the principle of indemnity-not of speculative gainwhich sent the rich young blood bounding through its veins ! If, in its youth, it guarded the white flects which sailed the Indian, the Pacific and the Atlantic oceans, laden with the wealth and energy of man, as in infancy, it held its protecting ægis over the commerce of the Mediterranean, the Ægæan, and the Euxine seas, it was indemnity to the assuredmnot profit—which was its inspiration! And now in its full maturity, when there is scarcely a city or a hamlet in the civilized world where its beneficent influence is not felt, spare it from that cruel legislative knife which seeks to draw its life blood, and to substitute therefor a poisonous fluid which will inevitably breed crime, disease and destruction !

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