|Pages 517-538||Pages 563-589|
|I. WHEREAS the act of assembly made in the thirtieth year of the reign of his late majesty King George the second, entitled, An act for reducing the several acts for making provision against invasions and insurrections into one act, will expire on the eighth day of June next, and it being necessary and expedient that the said act should be further continued: Be it therefore enacted by the Lieutenant-Governour, Council and Burgesses, of this present General Assembly, and it is hereby enacted by the authority of the same, that the said act of assembly shall continue, and be in force, from and after the said eighth day of June next, for and during the term of two years, and no longer.||Act providing against invasions and insurrections further continued.|
An Act for the better and more regular collecting the publick taxes.
|I. WHEREAS great frauds have been committed by the sheriffs in collecting the taxes imposed on lands, tithables and wheel carriages, for the support of the present war, and it is necessary that such frauds should be prevented, and an effectual method established for discovering the same: Be it therefore enacted by the Lieutenant-Governour, Council, and Burgesses, of this present General Assembly, and it is hereby enacted by the authority of the same, That every owner or proprietor of lands within this colony, and in case of nonage the guardian of such owner or proprietor, or where there shall be no guardian the executor||Taxes on tithables, lands, and carriages, how laid and collected.|
|or administrator in whose possession any lands belonging to his testator or intestate shall be, or where such owner or proprietor shall not be an inhabitant of this colony, his or her agent, attorney or overseer, shall at the time appointed to take the list of tithables, according to the directions of an act of general-assembly made in the twenty-second year of the reign of his late majesty king George the second, entitled, an act concerning tithables, by the court of the county wherein such lands shall lie, an exact list of his or her lands, according to the quantity mentioned in the patent or deed, or other writing or conveyance under which such owner or proprietor holds the same, if no part thereof hath been sold or transferred as aforesaid, then according to the remaining quantity of such lands in the possession of such owner or proprietor; or in case the quantity of the said lands cannot be ascertained by such patent, or other writing, then according to the quantity for which the quitrents have been heretofore paid and accounted.|| List of lands to be given in, with list of tithables.
|II. And if any owner or proprietor of lands, or in case of nonage any guardian, or where there shall be no guardian any executor or administrator, in whose possession any lands belonging to his testator or intestate shall be, or the agent, attorney or overseer, of persons residing out of the colony, shall fail to enlist his or her lands as aforesaid, every person so failing shall be adjudged a concealer, and shall forfeit and pay twenty shillings for every hundred acres of land so by him or her concealed; and it shall, moreover, be lawful for the sheriff or collector, and he is hereby required, to collect, levy, and account for the taxes, due for the land so concealed, in the same manner as if the said lands had been enlisted, according to the directions of this act: provided always, that where any person holds lands in one tract, lying in two or more counties, such person may enlist such lands in the county where the greatest quantity shall lie.|| |
Penalty for failure.
|III. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That every owner of a coach, chariot, or other four-wheeled carriage (waggon excepted) and every||Carriages how listed.|
|owner of a two-wheeled chair or chaise, shall, at the time appointed to take the lists of tithables as aforesaid, deliver to one of the justices appointed to take such lists in the county where such owner shall reside, a lest of every coach, chariot, or other wheeled carriage, to him or her belonging, as aforesaid; and every owner of such wheel carriage, who shall fail to enlist the same as aforesaid, shall be adjudged a concealer, and shall forfeit and pay three pounds for every four wheel carriage, and thirty shilling for every two-wheel chair or chaise, so by him or her concealed.|
|IV. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That every justice taking the lists of lands and wheel carriages as aforesaid, shall deliver the same, together with the list of tithables, to the clerk of his county-court, who shall set up such lists in the court-house of his county, according to the directions of the said recited act, and for the purposes therein mentioned; and if any justice shall fail to take and return the lists of lands and wheel carriages in his county as aforesaid, he shall forfeit and pay one hundred pounds for every such failure.||Duty of justice taking lists.|
|V. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That the several clerks of the county-courts shall deliver to the grand-jury, at every court to be held in the month of November, during the continuance of this act, a list of the lands, tithables, and wheel-carriages, taken in his county that year; and the presiding justice then present in court shall charge the grand-jury to examine the said list, and to present every concealer of land, tithables and wheel-carriages, as aforesaid; and upon such presentment such court shall order such owner, proprietor, guardian, attorney or overseer, as the case may be, to be summoned to appear at the next court, to answer such presentment; and upon such summon being returned executed, the court may proceed to hear, determine, and give judgment, as to them shall seem just, without the solemnity of a jury.|| Clerk to lay lists before grand-jury. |
Duty to present delinquents.
|VI. And whereas it has been doubted whether the jurisdiction of such court will extend to persons not residing within their county, Be it enacted by the authority aforesaid, that such court may proceed against any person or persons so presented by the grand-jury for any penalty inflicted by this act, in the same manner||Jurisdiction of court.|
|as if such person or persons did actually reside within their county.|
|VII. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That every county court clerk shall, before the last day of November in every year, make out and deliver, or cause to be delivered, to the treasurer of this colony for the time being, a fair and exact list of the tithables, lands and wheel-carriages, taken in his county; distinguishing upon such lists, in an alphabetical order, and in proper columns for that purpose, the owners or proprietors names, the number of tithables, quantity of lands, and the number and sorts of wheel carriages, belonging to every such owner or proprietor, respectively; and such clerk shall also deliver, before the time aforesaid, another such list to the sheriff of his county.||Clerk to return lists of tithables, lands & carriages, to treasurer.|
|VIII. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That every county-court clerk who fails to perform the duty by this act required of him, shall, for every such failuer, forfeit and pay twenty-five pounds.||Penalty for neglect.|
|IX. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That the courts of the several counties shall allow in their county levy, annually, four hundred pounds of neat tobacco to the clerks of their courts for their trouble in making out and delivering the lists to the treasurer, as aforesaid.||Allowance to clerks.|
|X. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That if, upon examination of the said lists, the treasurer of this colony shall discover any lands for which the taxes have not been paid, according to the directions of the acts of the general-assembly imposing the same; he shall, and is hereby required to direct the clerk of the treasury to make out lists of all such lands, and to transmit the same to the sheriffs of the several counties wherein such lands shall lie; and the said sheriffs shall, and they are hereby empowered and required to collect and levy the arrears of all such taxes upon the persons who ought to pay the same, according to such lists, and to account and pay such taxes to the said treasurer, in the same manner as the other publick taxes are to be paid.||Taxes on lands not listed, how collected.|
|XI. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That where the sheriff of any county heretofore hath, or hereafter shall appoint, any person to be his under-sheriff, to collect the taxes within his county, and such under sheriff shall neglect or refuse to account||Remedy of high sheriff, against his deputy, by motion.|
|for and pay the taxes by him collected, on or before the tenth day of June in every year, it shall and may be lawful for the general court, or court of the county whereof he is sheriff, upon a motion to them made by such sheriff, to give judgment against such under sheriff, and his security, for all the money and tobacco wherewith he shall be chargeable, and thereupon to award execution: Provided, that such under sheriff and security have ten days previous notice of such motion.|
|XII. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That all and every the fines and penalties, in this act inflicted, shall be one moiety thereof to his majesty, his heirs and successours, to be paid to the treasurer of this colony, appointed by or pursuant to an act of assembly, for the use of the publick; and the other moiety to the person who shall inform, or sue for the same; and may be recovered, by action of debt or information, in any court of record within this colony.||Fines, how appropriated.|
|XIII. And be it further enacted, That so much of the several acts heretofore made for collecting the taxes herein-mentioned, as is contrary to this act, be, and the same is hereby repealed.|
An Act for raising a Publick Levy.
|I. BE it enacted, by the Lieutenant-Governour, Council, & Burgesses, of this present General Assembly, and it is hereby enacted, by the authority of the same, That seven pounds of tobacco be paid by every tithable person within this dominion, for the defraying and payment of the publick charge of the country, being the publick levy from the sixth day of March, one thousand seven hundred and sixty-one, to the second day of November, one thousand seven hundred and sixty-two; and that it be paid by the collectors of the several counties to the several persons and counties, respectively, to whom it is proportioned by this general assembly.||Taxes for 1762.|
|And if it shall happen that there shall be more tithables in any county than the present levy is laid on, then the county shall have credit for so much, to the use of the county; and if fewer tithables in any county, then the county shall bear the loss.|
|II. Provided always, That where any allowance is made in the book of proportions to any county, to be paid in the same county, no more per poll shall be collected from the tithables of such county than will discharge the balance, after such allowance shall be deducted; and that every county court shall regulate the levy accordingly.|
|III. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That the sheriff of every county shall, at the court of his county, to be held in the months of January or February next, give bond and security for the due collection and payment of the publick levy, now laid and assessed.||Sheriff to give bond.|
|IV. And whereas there are several balances due to the publick from the following counties, to wit:|
|Arrearages of taxes, in certain counties, how collected.|
|Pounds of tobacco; as appears by the book of proportions: Be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That the sheriff of each of the said counties above mentioned shall sell the respective quantities of tobacco levied in his county, as a depositum for the use of the publick, to the highest bidder, at the court of his said county, to be held in the month of August next after such tobacco shall become due, and pay the money arising from such sale to the treasurer of this colony for the time being, on or before the 25th day of October thence next following; and if any sheriff shall neglect or refuse to pay the money arising from the sale of such tobacco, according to the directions aforesaid, it shall and may be lawful for the general court, or the court of the county whereof he is sheriff, on a|
|motion made to them by the treasurer, to give judgment against such sheriff, and his securities, for all the money arising on the sale of such tobacco, and thereon to award execution.|
|V. Provided, That such sheriff and securities, have ten days previous notice of such motion.|
|I. WHEREAS the act of assembly made in the twenty-second year of the reign of his late majesty, entitled, entitled, an act concerning strays, hath been found ineffectual to answer the purposes for which it was intended, and great frauds have been committed, under colour of the said act, by ill-disposed people, in taking up and concealing stray horses from the knowledge of the proprietors, and afterwards advertising them by false and imperfect descriptions, so as to make them their own property, under pretence of pursing the directions of the said act: Be it therefore enacted, by the Lieutenant Governour, Council and Burgesses, of this present General-Assembly, and it is hereby enacted by the authority of the same, that the said act of assembly, entitled, an act concerning strays, shall be, and the same is hereby, repealed and declared void, to all intents and purposes.|| Preamble. |
|II. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That every person within this colony and dominion who are by this act permitted and allowed, and shall hereafter take up any stray horse, mare or colt, shall immediately carry the same before some justice of the peace of the county where such stray||Method to be pursued in taking up strays.|
|shall be taken up, and make oath before such justice that the same was taken up at his plantation or place of residence in the said county, and that the marks or brands thereof have not been altered since the taking up thereof; and then such justice shall take a particular and exact description in writing of the marks, brands, stature, colour and age, of such horse, mare or colt, together with the place of abode of the taker up, which shall be by such justice transmitted to the clerk of the court of such county, in ten days after the same is taken, who shall enter the same in a book to be by him kept for that purpose; and that the taker up shall pay to such clerk ten pounds of tobacco for making such entry, to be paid and collected in the same manner as his other fees are by law directed to be collected: And every such person who shall hereafter take up any neat cattle, sheep, goat or hog, shall cause the same to be viewed by some freeholder of the county where the same shall happen, and shall immediately go with such freeholder before a justice of the said county, and make oath before him that the same was taken up at his plantation or place of residence in the said county, and that the marks or brands of such stray have not been altered or defaced since the taking up; and then such justice shall take from such freeholder, upon his corporal oath, a particular and exact description of the marks, brands, stature, colour and age, of every such neat cattle, the mark and colour of every such sheep, goat or hog, which description shall in like manner be transmitted by such justice to the clerk of his county, and be by him entered in such book; and the taker up shall pay to such clerk five pounds of tobacco for every head of neat cattle, and three pounds for every sheep, goat or hog, for entering such description in such book; to be paid and collected as aforesaid; and every such clerk shall, moreover, cause a copy of every such description to be publickly affixed at the court-house of his county, on two several court days next after the same shall be transmitted to him. And for a reward for taking up, there shall be paid by the owner five shillings for every horse, mare, colt, and head of neat cattle, and one shilling for every sheep, goat, or hog.|
|III. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That if no owner shall appear, after notice twice published at the courthouse so aforesaid, the||Where no owner appears.|
|taker up shall make application to some justice of his county, who is hereby required thereupon to issue his warrant to any three honest freeholders of the neighbourhood, who, after taking an oath before the said justice for that purpose, shall view and appraise such stray; and the property thereof shall, within six months after such appraisment, be vested in the taker up, where the valuation does not exceed twenty shillings: but it shall and may be lawful, nevertheless, for the former owner thereof, at any time afterwards, either to demand and recover such stray, or the valuation money, deducting the reward for taking up, and the clerk's fees; and where the valuation exceeds twenty shillings, the taker up shall send a description of such stray, certified by the clerk to the printer, with one month after such valuation and appraisment, together with the name of the county and place of residence, to be advertized four times in the Virginia Gazette, for which the printer may demand and take two shillings for every stray horse, mare, colt, or head of neat cattle, mentioned in such advertisement, for the first, and one shilling for every advertisement thereafter, and no more, and one shilling for every hog or sheep so advertised. And if no owner shall claim such stray, within six months after such publication, the property shall be vested in the taker up; but it shall in like manner be lawful for the former owner thereof, at any time afterwards, upon proving his property, to demand and recover such stray, or the valuation money, upon paying the reward for taking up, and the clerk's and printer's fees. And every person taking up any stray, and failing to carry the same, if a horse, mare or colt, before a justice as aforesaid, or if any other stray, failing to cause a description thereof to be given to a justice, in manner aforesaid, in ten days after taking up the same, or failing to send a description thereof certified by the clerk to the printer, within the time and according to the directions of this act, or making use of any such stray before the same shall be appraised as aforesaid, shall forfeit and pay ten pounds to the owner thereof, recoverable with costs before any justice of the county where the offence shall be committed, and moreover shall be liable to the action of such owner, and upon conviction shall pay double damages.|| Printer's allowance. |
Penalty for using strays before the directions of this act are pursued.
|IV. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That if any person whatsoever, whether he be a freeholder, tenant for years, or otherwise, shall take up any boat or other vessel adrift, he shall in like manner cause the same to be viewed by some freeholder of the county where the same shall be taken up, and shall immediately go with such freeholder before some justice of the county, and make oath when and where the same was taken up, and that the marks thereof have not been altered or defaced since the taking up; and then such justice shall take from such freeholder, upon oath, a particular and exact description of such vessel, and the burthen and built thereof, and thereupon the like proceedings shall be pursued towards publishing at the courthouse, appraising and advertising the same in the Virginia Gazette, and the taker up shall be entitled to the same rewards, and be subject to the same fines & forfeitures, to be recovered and appropriated in the same manner, as are herein before directed, prescribed and appointed, with respect to stray horses.||Boats adrift, &c.|
|V. Provided always, That if, after notice published as aforesaid, any stray shall happen to die or get away before the owner thereof shall make claim and prove his or her right, the taker up shall not be answerable for the same; and if any person not being a freeholder, or tenant by lease, for the term of three years at least, shall presume to take up any stray, or if any such freeholder, or tenant for years, shall take up any such stray at any other place than on his own plantation, or at his place of residence, so as to claim the reward hereby given, he or she shall for every offence forfeit and pay five pounds to the owner thereof, recoverable with costs before any justice of the county where the offence shall be committed; and upon failure of payment, or giving security for payment in one month after conviction, every such offender shall, by order of such justice, receive thirty nine lashes on his or her bare back, well laid on.||Where a stray shall die.|
|VI. Provided always, That the execution of this act shall be, and is hereby suspended, until his majesty' approbation thereof shall be obtained.||Suspending clause.|
|I. WHEREAS by an act of assembly passed in the twenty-second year of the reign of his late majesty King George the second, entitled, an Act declaring the law concerning executions, and for relief of insolvent debtors, provision os made for relief of insolvent persons, who shall be taken or charged in execution, on such person or persons delivering his or her whole estate, upon oath, to the use of his or their creditors, as by the said act directed, shall be discharged in manner thereby provided; and whereas it is equally reasonable that all debtors should pay their just debts, and on surrendering all their effects, without fraud or embezzlement, to be distributed among their creditors, such debtors should be freed from all claims for the same: Be it therefore enacted, by the Lieutenant Governour, Council, & Burgesses, of this present General Assembly, and it is hereby enacted, by the authority of the same, That from and after the first day of June next it shall be lawful for any debtor or debtors to tender and deliver to any two or more of his, her or their creditors, a true schedule of his, her or their, whole estate, by him, her or them, subscribed, and make oath (or being a quaker, affirm) to the effect following, that is to say: "I A. B. do upon my corporal oath, in the presence of ALMIGHTY GOD, solemnly swear, profess and declare, that the schedule now delivered, and by me subscribed, doth contain, to the best of my knowledge and remembrance, a full, just true and perfect, account and discovery of all the estate, goods and effects, unto me anywise belonging, and such debts as are to me owing, or to any person in trust for me, and of all securities and contracts whereby any money may hereafter become payable, or any benefit or advantage accrue to me, or to my use, or to any other person or persons in trust for me; and that I, or any person or persons in trust for me, have not any other land, money, stock or estate, real or personal, in possession, reversion or remainder; and that I have not, directly|| Preamble. |
The oath, schedule and discharge, of insolvents.
|"or indirectly, sold, lessened, or otherwise disposed of, in trust, or concealed, all, or any part of, my lands, money, goods, stocks, debts, securities, contracts, or estate, whereby to secure the same, to receive or expect any profit or advantage thereof, or to defraud or deceive any creditor or creditors to whom I am indebted, in anywise whatsoever. So help me GOD." Which oath shall be made before the court of that county, city, town or corporation, wherein such debtor lives; and such schedule, subscribed in open court, shall remain with the clerk of such court, for the better information of creditors, and shall contain a true and perfect list of all such persons lands, slaves, stock, monies, goods, debts, and other estate or effects, whatsoever; his or her necessary wearing apparel, and utensils of trade, and the necessary wearing apparel of such debtor's wife and children, only excepted: And in case any such person shall commit wilful and corrupt perjury, or remove, conceal or embezzle, any part of his or her estate, real or personal, to the value of ten pounds current money, with intent to defraud his or her creditors, such person, being thereof lawfully convicted, shall be deemed and adjudged guilty of felony, and shall suffer as a felon, without benefit of clergy; and such felon's goods and estate shall go and be divided among his or her creditors, any law, usage or custom, to the contrary, notwithstanding.|
|II. And be it further enacted, That the creditors to whom such tender shall be made, shall receive the same, and secure the estate in such schedule contained, in the best manner they can, and shall forthwith cause notice thereof to be published in the Virginia Gazette, and continued as long as shall be necessary; in which notice the creditors of such insolvent person, or their agents, shall be required to meet within ninety days at a certain day and place, in the county, city, town or corporation, where the debtor lives, to prove their respective debts, and choose assignees; and the creditors then present, or the major part of them, shall nominate and appoint, under their hands and seals, any two of themselves to be assignees; who, having accepted such trust, shall respectively take an oath to the effect following, that is to say: "I A. B. do swear that I will faithfully, impartially and honestly, according to the best of my skill and knowledge,||Assignees to be appointed.|
|"execute the several powers and trusts reposed in me, as an assignee of the estate and effects of and that, without favour or affection, prejudice or malice. So help me God." And thereupon all lands, tenements and hereditaments, in such schedule contained, for such use, interest, right or title, as such debtor or debtors then shall have in the same, which he; she or they, may lawfully depart withal, or dispose of; and all slaves, goods and chattels, whatsoever, in such schedule contained, & also all outstanding debts, and all the estate, real or personal, of such debtor, in possession, reversion or remainder, and all his or her effects whatsoever, at the time of executing such schedule, though not therein-contained, shall be, and are hereby declared, to be vested in the assignees appointed as aforesaid, as fully and amply, to all intents and purposes, as the same were vested in such debtors at the time of surrendering his or her estate upon oath as aforesaid; and such assignees, and in case of death or legal disability the surviver or remaining assignee, is and are hereby authorized, empowered and required, to sell and dispose of the same to any person or persons whatsoever, within three months after their being appointed and sworn, by publick auction, to the highest bidder, at such place or places as such assignees or assignee shall think proper, upon twelve months credit, taking good security of the respective buyers, and publishing notice of the day and place of sale, by advertisements affixed in publick places, in the same and the counties adjacent to the debtor's late place of abode, and in the Virginia Gazette, at least one month before, and continuing the same until the day of sale: and the monies arising by such sale, deducting necessary charges, and five per centum for their trouble, shall be by such assignees or assignee applied and disposed of to the uses limited by this act, and to no other use, intent or purpose, whatsoever.|
|III. And be it further enacted, That the neat produce arising upon surrender, sale or recovery, of the estate of any insolvent debtor, shall be by the respective assignees or assignee paid or distributed among the several creditors of such insolvent person, in proportion to the debts due to them, who shall have duly proved their respective debt; and if any overplus shall arise after all debts paid, such overplus shall be paid||The distribution of the insolvent's effect's.|
|or redelivered to the debtor whose estate it was, or to his executors or administrators, for his or their own use.|
|IV. And for the better direction of assignees in the management and execution of the trust reposed in them, and that all creditors may have time to come in and prove their debt, Be it further enacted, that within six months after assignees are appointed and sworn, in pursuance of this act, every creditor residing within this colony shall deliver to the respective assignees of his or her debtor's estate an account in writing, by him or her subscribed, and shall make oath and swear before the said assignees, or before the court of that county where such creditor lives (or, being one of the people called Quakers, make solemn affirmation) that the sum contained in such account is justly and fide bona due to him or her, after all due credits given and allowed, to the best of his or her knowledge, and shall subscribe the same; which oath the said assignees, or the justice of such court, are hereby empowered and required to administer, and certify upon such account; and no claim or demand shall be received or allowed until such oath or affirmation made, subscribed and certified; and every creditor failing or neglecting to deliver such account, within the time aforesaid, shall lose his or her whole debt, and be utterly excluded from any share or dividend to be made by virtue of this act, and shall be forever afterwards barred from recovering any judgment for such debt against the debtor or his estate.||How creditors are to act.|
|V. And whereas it is reasonable and just, as well as necessary, for the support of publick credit, that creditors residing in Great Britain, or other foreign parts, should have benefit of this act, if they think fit: Be it therefore further enacted, that all such creditors may transmit their respective claims or demands, duly proved, to their agents in this colony, which being produced to the assignees, at any time before dividend made, shall be by them received, and being found legally proved, certified, and justly due, shall be allowed, and such creditors thereupon entitled to his, her or their, respective share or dividend of the debtor's estate, in manner and proportion by this act provided for other creditors.||Foreign creditors.|
|VI. Provided always, That no such dividend shall be made until twelve months at least after sale of such insolvent debtor's estate.||No dividend before twelve months.|
|VII. Provided also, that every debtor may and shall have liberty to disprove any claim or demand made or brought against him, or his estate; and it shall be lawful for the assignees to allow all just discounts against any demand made by any person, though such demand be duly proved, as by this act required: and where it shall appear to the acting assignees that there hath been mutual trust given by the debtor and any other person, or mutual debts, the said assignees, or any other person or persons by them appointed, shall and may state the accounts, and one debt may be set against another; and what shall appear to be due on the balance of such account, and no more shall be allowed or paid.||Discounts.|
|VIII. And whereas many abuses may be committed by pretended creditors, Be it further enacted, That if any person shall swear (or, being one of the people called Quakers, solemnly affirm) before the acting assignees, or in open court, that any sum of money is due to him or her which is not really due or owing, or that more is due than is really due or owing, knowing the same not to be due or owing, and that such oath or affirmation is false and untrue, and being thereof convicted by indictment or information, such person shall suffer the pains and penalties of wilful and corrupt perjury, and shall moreover forfeit and pay double the sum so sworn or affirmed to be due or owing; to be recovered in the name of the assignees, by action of debt or information, in any court of record of this dominion, with costs, and to be divided among the other creditors of the person against whose estate such oath or affirmation shall be made.||Pretended creditors.|
|IX. And for preventing frauds and collusive practices, Be it further enacted, That every debtor surrendering his estate and effects, in manner by this act directed, shall also deliver to the acting assignees all his books, papers and accounts, upon oath (or, being a quaker, upon affirmation) and shall personally attend the meeting of his or her creditors, to choose assignees, and at any other time or times by such assignees required, and shall submit to be examined upon oath or affirmation, and to answer interrogatories touching or concerning his or her estate and effects, real and personal, when in what manner, to whom and upon what consideration, he or she disposed of conveyed or transferred the same, to any person||Insolvents to deliver up their whole estate, and to attend the assignees.|
|or persons whatsoever, and how, or upon what consideration, any claim or demand brought against him or her accrued or become due, to the best of his or her knowledge: and if he or she shall refuse or neglect to attend, or to answer upon oath or affirmation, or shall give a false answer, knowing the same to be false and untrue, the persons neglecting or refusing to answer shall lose and be excluded from all benefit of this act; and the person wilfully giving or making any false answer, knowing the same to be false and untrue, and being thereof convicted upon indictment or information, shall suffer the pains and penalties of wilful and corrupt perjury.|
|X. And be it further enacted, That every mortgage, judgment, bond, bill, contract or other security, whatsoever, given or entered into by any insolvent person to his or her creditor, or to any insolvent person to his or her creditor, or to any other person, not being a creditor, or in trust for such creditor, or other person, for more than the just debt really and bona fide due and owing from such debtor or insolvent person, at the time of his or her entering into, or giving such judgment, mortgage, bond, bill, or other security, with intent thereby to defraud the other creditors, shall be wholly void, and such judgment may be reversed; and the party or parties sued on such mortgage, bond, bill, contract, or security, shall and may plead the general issue, and give this act and the special matter in evidence, and thereupon judgment shall pass for the defendant, and shall have his full costs, any law, custom or usage, to the contrary notwithstanding.||Collusive bonds, &c; avoided.|
|XI. And the creditor taking or accepting such mortgage, judgment, bond or security, whatsoever, shall lose his whole debt, and be utterly excluded and barred from any share or dividend of such insolvent person's estate; and if any creditor, or other person, not being a creditor, shall fraudulently take or accept any deed or conveyance of lands, tenements or hereditaments, or any monies, slaves, or other estate or effects whatsoever, in trust, for the sue of an insolvent debtor, and shall not within six months after assignees of such insolvent debtor's estate appointed and sworn, give notice thereof to such assignees, but knowingly conceal the same, the party or parties so accepting and concealing such forfeit and pay double the value of the estate or effects so concealed; to be||Creditor accepting such bonds to lose debt, &c.|
|recovered with costs, in the name of the acting assignees, in any court of record of this dominion, by action of debt or information, and to be applied to the use of the creditors of such insolvent debtor, in like manner as other effects are by this act directed to be applied and divided: and in case any person or persons whatsoever, other than the party or parties in whose hands the same shall be found, shall inform or give notice to the acting assignees of any estate or effects belonging to an insolvent debtor, and concealed, the informer shall be entitled to a reward of ten per centum, out of the whole sum recovered and received by the assignees, upon or by means of such information; to be paid by the assignees, recovering and receiving the same, to such informer, for his or her own use.||The informer of concealed goods &c. to have ten per cent.|
|XII. And be it further enacted, That every person and persons, who at the time of an insolvent's delivering a schedule of his estate and effects to his creditors, and publick notice given thereof, shall be indebted to, or have the custody of any money, estate or effects belonging to such debtor, shall forthwith give notice thereof, and pay or deliver the same to the assignees which shall be appointed in pursuance of this act, or to their order, and to no other person or persons whatsoever, under penalty of being liable as a concealer; and in case of suit brought for such estate effects, the defendant may plead the general issue, and give this act, and the special matter, together with the assignees receipt, in evidence, whereupon verdict and judgment, shall be given for the defendant, and he shall have full costs.||Persons possessed of insolvents effects to deliver them to the assignees.|
|XIII. And for the better enabling insolvent persons to make full and clear discovery of their estates and effects, and that unfortunate people may not be long imprisoned, which can be no benefit, but may be a disadvantage, to their creditors, Be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That from the time any person shall actually surrender his or her estate, and deliver a schedule thereof, as by this act required, every such person shall be free from arrests, restraint or imprisonment, at the suit of any of his or her creditors, for and during the space of ninety days, and for such further term or time as shall be allowed and certified by the assignees appointed upon such surrender; and the creditors receiving such schedule, & the said assignees, are hereby respectively authorized and empowered||An insolvent acting agreeable to this act to be exempted from arests, &c.|
|to grant unto such person, without fee or reward, one or more certificate or certificates, under their respective hands and seals, certifying that the person therein-named hath surrendered his or her estate, and in all things conformed to this act, by virtue whereof he or she is to be free from all arrests, restraints or imprisonment, at the suit of any of his or her creditors, for and during the time therein limited, which may be renewed and continued from time to time by the acting assignees, as they shall see cause; and such certificate being proved before the court of that county, city, town or corporation, wherein such debtor lives, shall be recorded; and the clerk of such court is hereby required to isuse under his hand, when demanded, one or more copy or copies of such certificate, which being produced to the officer who shall arrest the person, thereby privileged, and giving such officer a copy thereof, he or she shall be forthwith discharged, and in case any officer shall nevertheless detain him or her, such officer shall forfeit and pay to the party detained, for his or her own use, twenty shillings for every day such officer shall detain him or her, to be recovered in any court of record of this dominion, with full costs of suit; and where any insolvent person shall be in custody or execution before such certificate obtained, it shall and may be lawful for any justice of the peace of any county, city, town or corporation, within this colony, upon petition of such prisoner, by warrant under his hand and seal, whereof notice shall be given to the party or parties, his or their executors, administrators, attorney, or agents, at whose suit such prisoner shall be imprisoned, to require the sheriff, gaoler, or keeper of any prison within his jurisdiction, to being before the justices of the peace, at the court to be held next after the date of the said warrant for such respective county, city, town or corporation, the body of any person being in prison as aforesaid, together with a list of the several writs or executions with which he or she is or are charged, which warrant every such sheriff, gaoler or keeper, is hereby commanded to obey; and such prisoner shall before the justices, in open court, subscribe and deliver in a schedule of his or her whole estate upon oath, as by this act is before directed, to the use of his or her creditors, or shall make it appear to the satisfaction of such court that he or she|
|hath already delivered such schedule to his or her creditors, according to the directions of this act; and thereupon it shall be lawful for the said justices, or any four of them, by their warrant, to command such sheriff gaoler or keeper, forthwith to set at liberty such prisoner, which warrant shall be a sufficient discharge to such sheriff, gaoler or keeper, and shall indemnify him or them against any escape or escapes, action or actions, whatsoever, which shall or may be brought or presented against him or them by reason thereof, and such prisoner shall be accordingly forthwith discharged, without fee or reward, under penalty of twenty-shillings, to be paid by every officer who shall detain him or her after such warrant produced, for every day he or she shall be so detained, and such officer shall moreover be liable to the action of the party aggrieved; and if any action shall be commenced against any sheriff, or other officer, for performance of his duty in pursuance of this act, the defendant may plead the general issue, and give this act, and the special matter, in evidence, and upon nonsuit, or judgment for the defendant, he shall have double costs.|
|XIV. And that evil-minded persons may not, to the prejudice of creditors, abuse the liberty by this act intended to such debtors only, as do and shall in all things conform thereto: Be it further enacted, That if any person obtaining such certificate or warrant of freedom from arrests, restraint or imprisonment, shall afterwards abscond or conceal him or herself, or shall remove or endeavour to remove and escape out of this dominion, he or she shall lose and be barred of all protection and benefit intended by this act; and it shall be lawful for the respective assignees, or any creditor or creditors of such person, or their or any of their agents, accompanied by a constable or other officer, at any times afterwards, to seize and retake the body of such debtor so concealed, escaped, or endeavouring to escape, and to bring him or her before any justice of the peace, for the county, city, town or corporation, where he or she shall be retaken; and every justice of the peace, before whom such prisoner shall be brought, shall be, and is hereby authorized and empowered, by warrant under his hand and seal, reciting the cause of commitment, to command the sheriff, gaoler or prison-keeper, of such||Where an insolvent absconds.|
|respective county, city, town or corporation, to receive the body of such prisoner so retaken, and him or her safely keep in his custody, without bail, or mainprize, until he or she shall be thence discharged by due course of law. And such prisoner so concealed or escaped, or endeavouring to escape, and so retaken, shall be proceeded against as a felon; and being thereof lawfully convicted, shall be deemed and adjudged guilty of felony, and shall suffer as a felon, without benefit of clergy; and his or her estate shall go, and be divided, among his or her creditors. And if any sheriff, or other officer, having such prisoner in custody, shall voluntarily or negligently suffer him or her to escape, or if any other person or persons shall wilfully aid, counsel, assist or rescue, such prisoner, knowing him or her to be an insolvent debtor, within the meaning and construction of this act, every sheriff or officer so suffering an escape, and every other person knowingly aiding, counselling, or assisting such debtor to remove, escape, or conceal him or herself, or rescuing such prisoner, shall be liable for all debts from him or her due and owing at the time of such escape, concealment or rescous; which shall and may be recovered with costs, by action of debt, in the name of the assignees of such debtor, for the use of his or her creditors, in any court of record of this dominion.|
|XV. And to the end assignees may faithfully discharge their trust, and may not delay dividing and paying the monies or effects lodged in their hands for the use of creditors, Be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That every person and persons chosen assignee or assignees of the estate and effects of any debtor, by virtue and in pursuance of this act, and accepting such trust, shall execute the same in all things as by this act required and directed, and not otherwise; and shall from time to time enter, or cause to be entered, in a book for that purpose, just and true accounts of all their receipts, disbursements and payment, and also all claims proved and allowed, how and to whom due, all sales by them made, with the names of the respective buyers and securities, and how the clear produce of the estate in their hands is divided, proportioned and paid, to the several creditors respectively, and also the receipts given by such creditors, or their agents, upon payment thereof, and all their proceedings from time to time during the||Assignees to keep a book of their proceedings.|
|continuance of their authority and trust; to which book the debtor, and every creditor, having proved his debt, or the agent of such creditor, shall, at all seasonable times, have free resort, and inspect the same as often as they think fit; and a true copy of such book shall be by such assignees subscribed, and delivered upon oath, in open court, before the justices of that county, city, town or corporation, wherein the debtor's estate was sold, to be recorded: and the said assignees shall, within eighteen months after their appointment, make a final dividend of the clear produce of the debtor's estate and effects in their hands, and pay to every creditor respectively his or her just proportion or share thereof, as by this act directed, out of the monies received, or securities taken, upon sale, when by such creditor, his or her agent, after expiration of the said eighteen months, demanded, the party receiving the same giving a receipt; and thereupon the said assignees, having bona fide executed the trust in them reposed, according to the directions and true intent and meaning of this act, shall be, and are hereby declared to be indemnified and discharged from all future claims or demands for or concerning such estate; and their authority and trust shall cease and be determined; but in case any assignees or assignee shall delay to make such dividend, or to pay the same as aforesaid, after expiration of the time by this act limited, or shall not render just and true accounts as by this act directed and required, all and every such assignees and assignee so delaying, or not rendering true accounts, their and every of their respective heirs, executors and administrators, shall be liable to the action of every creditor claiming under such assignment, for his or her debt and damages, and shall moreover forfeit and pay to the party aggrieved by such delay ten per cent. upon the sum to him or her due, to be recovered with costs by the party aggrieved, his or her executors or administrators, in any court of record of this dominion.||The assignees duty.|
|XVI. Provided always, That if at any time before or after final distribution made as aforesaid, any other estate or effects belonging to an insolvent person before his surrender shall be discovered or found, the same shall be, and is hereby vested in the assignees of such insolvent persons's estate, to be by them, or the surviver of them, demanded, sued for, and recovered, in any court of law or equity, in the same||When an insolvent's effects are found before or after distribution.|
|manner and right as such insolvent person might or could sue for and recover the same; and out of the monies arising thereby, the assignees or assignee receiving the same shall pay to the party making such discovery a reward of ten per cent. on the money received for his or her own use, and the residue shall be distributed and paid to and among the respective creditors in manner and proportion aforesaid: and where any estate, real or personal, shall be found mortgaged by an insolvent debtor, at any time before his or her becoming insolvent, and surrendering his or her estate as aforesaid, if such mortgage be redeemable, the assignees may, if they think fit, and they are hereby authorized and empowered to tender the principal sum and interest, if any due thereon, for the payment whereof such estate was mortgaged, to the party or parties to whom the mortgage was made, who is, and are hereby required to accept the money so tendered, and to restore and deliver up the estate mortgaged, together with the deed or deeds of the mortgager, unto the said assignees, which estate so mortgaged and redeemed shall from thenceforth be, and is hereby vested in the assignees redeeming the same, for the use and benefit of the respective creditors; and such assignees shall and may and are hereby empowered and required to sell, and convey to any person or persons whatsoever, all the estate, real and personal, so redeemed, and all the right, title and interest, of such debtor in or to the same, or any part thereof, as fully and amply as such debtor might or could lawfully do, which sale shall be made upon notice given, and twelve months credit, in manner by this act before directed, and the clear profits arising by such redemption and sale accounted for distributed, and paid in like manner and proportion, to and among the respective creditors of such mortgager. And in case any mortgagee shall refuse to accept such tender, and thereupon to deliver up any redeemable estate, as by this act required, the assignees making such tender shall and may, by virtue of this act, at any time, recover the same, and shall have, and be entitled to, the same methods and rights of recovery, to all intents and purposes, at the common law, or in equity, as the mortgager might have or be entitled to; and every court of record of this dominion is hereby authorized and declared to have and take cognizance and jurisdiction thereof.|
|XVII. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That all deeds and conveyances for lands, tenements, hereditaments, or other estate, whatsoever, by assignees duly made and executed, upon sale thereof for a valuable consideration, paid or secured in pursuance and according to the directions of this act, and recorded, shall be good and effectual in law for conveying and transferring the use, property, and all the estate, right, title and interest, of the insolvent person whose estate it was, unto the party or parties, to or for whom such deed or conveyance shall be so made, executed, and recorded, and to and for such use or sues as shall be therein limited or expressed; and such party or parties, and his, her, or their heirs and assigns, shall and may at all times thereafter, by virtue of this act, respectively have, hold, possess and enjoy, all the estate by such deed or conveyance sold and conveyed, as fully and amply to all intents and purposes, as if such deed or conveyance had been legally made and executed by the person or persons whose estate it was, free and clear of all claim or demand of such person or persons, or any claiming under him, her or them, any law, custom or usage, to the contrary notwithstanding.||The conveyances made by the assignees to be valid.|
|XVIII. And to encourage all debtors to make full and effectual discovery and surrender of their estates, and that such unfortunate persons may not be wholly destitute of support for themselves and families: Be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That it shall be lawful for the assignees, upon petition of the debtor surrendering his or her estate, to allow such petitioner, out of his or her effects, such maintenance and support, from time to time, until final dividend made, as to the assignees, considering the circumstances of the petitioner's family and estate, shall appear fit and necessary; and where, upon final settlement of the estate and effects of any insolvent debtor, who shall in all things have conformed to the direction of this act, the clear produce thereof, after all charges, and the allowances herein before and after mentioned deducted, shall be sufficient to pay the creditors who have proved their debts ten shillings in the pounds, then the sum of five shillings per centum shall be allowed to such debtor out of the neat produce of all the estate recovered in and received; and where the estate shall be found sufficient to pay twelve||The allowance to the insolvent.|
|shillings and sixpence in the pound, an allowance of seven pounds ten shillings per centum shall be made; and in case such clear produce amounts to fifteen shillings in the pound, or more, the debtor shall have and receive an allowance of ten pounds per centum for his or her own use, to be paid by the assignees, and charged in their accounts. And the said assignees are also hereby authorized, empowered and required, before expiration of their trust, to grant unto such insolvent person, without fee or reward, a certificate, under their hands and seals, that the person therein named hath made full discovery and surrender of his or her estate and effects, and in all things conformed to the directions of this act, and that there doth not appear to them any reason to doubt of the truth thereof; which certificate being proved before the justices of that court to whom such assignees shall make return of their proceedings, shall be recorded, and the clerk of such court shall, without fee, give a copy thereof to the person therein named, and certify, that the same is duly proved and recorded; and thereupon such insolvent person shall be, and is hereby declared to be free and discharged from all debts and demands by him or her contracted or owing before or at the time he or she became insolvent, and delivered up all his or her estate or effects: and in case any such person shall be afterwards arrested or sued for any debt or contract made or owing before that time, he or she producing to the officer arresting him or her such certificate as aforesaid, and giving such officer a copy thereof, shall be discharged upon common bail, and the defendant shall and may plead in general that the cause of such action or suit did accrue before such time he or she became insolvent, and may give this act, and the special matter, in evidence, together with an attested copy of the assignees certificate, which shall be allowed, and thereupon verdict or judgment pass for the defendant, unless the plaintiff prove that such certificate was fraudulently obtained, or any concealment by the defendant to the value of ten pounds current money; and if the plaintiff be non-suited, or upon verdict or judgment given against him, the defendant shall recover his full costs.|| |
The insolvent's certificate.
Where he shall be sued after obtaining certificate.
|XIX. Provided nevertheless, That this act shall extend to give benefit to such debtors only as shall in all things bona fide conform thereto.||Those only who conform to this act entitled to the benefit of it.|
|XX. Provided also, That where it shall appear necessary to assignees and creditors, upon consideration of the circumstances and incidents happening in recovery and sale of an insolvent's estate, to prolong the time by this act limited for making final dividend and distribution thereof, it shall be lawful for any assignees, by and with consent of the creditors who have proved their debts, or the major part of them, under their hands and seals, entered into the assignees book of accounts, to allow such further time as they shall think fit and necessary; and in case of death or legal disability of any assignee, to appoint others in the room of the person or persons dead or so disabled: and every such assignee shall and may, by virtue thereof, have and execute the several trusts, powers and authorities, by this act vested in assignees; and shall in all things conform and be subject thereto, for and during such further term or time as shall be so allowed.|| Assignees may lengthen the time of making final distribution.
where an assignee dies.
|XXI. And be it further enacted, That this act shall continue and be in force for and during the term of five years, and from thence to the end of the next session of assembly, and no longer, and shall be held and deemed to be a publick act.||The continuance of this act, which is to be deemed a publick one.|
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