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Conflict of laws. 54. Liability of acceptor. 55. Liability of drawer or indorser. 72. Rules where laws conflict. 56. Stranger signing bill liable as indorser.
Part III.-CHECKS ON A BANKER. 57. Measure of damages against par- 73. Check defined. ties to dishonored bill.
74. Presentment of check for pay58. Transferrer by delivery and trans
75. Revocation of banker's anthority. Discharge of bill.
76. Negotiability may be restricted. 59. Payment in due course.
Part IV.- PROMISSORY NOTES. 60. Banker paying demand draft 77. Promissory note defined.
whereon indorsement is forged. 78. Delivery necessary. 61. Acceptor the holder at maturity. 79. Joint and several notes. 62. Express waiver.
80. Note payable on demand. 63. Cancellation.
81. Presentment of note for payment. 64. Alteration of bill.
82. Liability of maker.
83. Application of Part II to notes. Acceptance and payment for honor. 65. Acceptance for honor supra pro
Part V.-SUPPLEMENTARY. test
84. Good faith. 66. Liability of acceptor for honor.
85. Signature. 67. Presentment to acceptor for honor, 86. Computation of time. 68. Payment for honor supra protest. 87. When noting equivalent to pro
test Lost instruments.
88. Protest when notary not accessi
ble. 69. Holder's right to duplicate of lost 89. Bills of lading, warehouse rebill.
ceipts, and orders for
property. 70. Action on lost bill.
90. Advances of money thereon proBill in a set.
91. Insurance policies on property in 71. Rules as to sets.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, in words and figures following, that is to say :
PART I.-PRELIMINARY. SECTION 1. That to provide for the general welfare of the United States, and to carry into execution more fully than heretofore the power to regulate commerce among the several States, and to promote the security and efficiency of the national banks in their commercial transactions, all bills of exchange, promissory notes, checks on banks or bankers, and other negotiable: instruments purporting to have been made in one of the United States, or a Territory thereof, or the District of Columbia, and payable in any other State, Terri
tory, or country, are hereby declared to be means and instruments of commerce among the several States, and all such bills, notes, checks, and instruments made or dated on or after the date of the approval of this act shall be governed exclusively by the provisions thereof; and all laws or parts of laws of the several States in any wise inconsistent with the provisions of this act are hereby suspended.
SEC. 2. That this act may be cited as the bills of exchange act, eighteen hundred and eighty-four.
In this act, unless the context otherwise requires,
“Acceptance” means an acceptance completed by delivery or notification.
“Action” includes counter-claim and set-off.
“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 or insolvency.
“ Bearer” means the person in possession of a bill or note which is payable to bearer.
“Bill” means bill of exchange, and “note” means promis
" Delivery” means transfer of possession, actual or constructive, from one person to another.
“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.
“Issue” means the first delivery of a bill or note, complete in form to a person who takes it as a holder.
“ Person” includes a body of persons, whether incorporated or not.
“Value" means valuable consideration. “Written” includes printed, and writing” includes print.
PART II.-BILLS OF EXCHANGE.
FORM AND INTERPRETATION,
Sec. 3. (1) That 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 reimburse 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;
(d) That it provides for costs, expenses, or counsel fees in case of suit.
SEC. 4. (1) That an inland bill is a bill which is or on the face of it purports to be (a) both drawn and payable within the United States or (b) drawn within the United States upon some person resident therein. Any other bill is a foreign bill.
For the purposes of this act the words “United States” include the Territories thereof and the District of Columbia.
(2) Unless the contrary appear on the face of the bill the holder may treat it as an inland bill.
Sec. 5. (1) That 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 the drawee is a fictitious person or a person not having the capacity to contract, the holder may treat the instrument, at his option, either as a bill of exchange or as a promissory note.
SEC. 6. (1) That the drawee must be named or otherwise indicated in a bill 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.
tain within the meaning of this act, although it is required to fault in payment of any installment the whole shall become
(d) According to an indicated rate of exchange or accord
Sec. 7. (1) That 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 or several payees. A bill may also be made payable to the holder of an office for the being.
(3) Where the payee is a fictitious or non-existing person the bill may be treated as payable to bearer.
Sec. 8. (1) That 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 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.
Sec. 9. (1) That the sum payable by a bill is a sum be paid
(a) With interest.
(C) By stated installments, with a provision that upon dedue. ing to a rate of exchange to be ascertained as directed by the bill.
(2) Where the sum payable is expressed in words and also in figures, and there is a discrepancy between the two, 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 shall be computed at the rate of six per centum per annum.
SEC. 10. (1) That 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.
Sec. 11. That 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.
(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. A privilege of paying the bill before maturity shall not invalidate it.
Sec. 12. That 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,
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.
SEC. 13. (1) That 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 antedated or postdated, or that it bears date on a Sunday.
SEC. 14. That 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