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so many days "after sight," the date of the acceptance should be appended, and the time will count from the day of acceptance.

6. None of these acceptances will be complete unless accompanied by a delivery of the bill to the person presenting it for acceptance. If the drawee have written an acceptance across the bill, he can cancel it at any time while the bill is in his possession, or at all events till he has intimated his intention to accept.

7. If the holder be entitled to a general acceptance, and the drawee refuse, and make a special or qualified acceptance, the holder may treat the bill as dishonored by non-acceptance, may have it noted, and advise the prior parties, if any, of a refusal to accept.

If the drawee be discovered to be incompetent to contract, as by being an infant or married woman, the holder may treat the bill as dishonored.

8. Where the bill is in the hands of a payee or indorsee, and the drawee cannot be found, a stranger may, by going before a notary, accept the bill, after it has been protested, for the honor of the drawer or indorser. He then writes across the bill, “Accepted, S. P." (or supra protest), "for the honor of A. B." or these latter words may be omitted. He then signs his name.

9. The acceptor is bound to know the handwriting of the drawer; therefore by acceptance the signature and capacity of the drawer are admitted, and the acceptor cannot afterwards shew that the drawer's signature was forged, or that he was incapable of contracting.

The acceptor also admits the capacity of the payee to receive, and consequently to indorse, and cannot afterwards shew his inability to do so, or that she is a married woman, &c.

But if the bill when accepted is already indorsed in the name of an existing person, and the name turns out to have been forged, the acceptor may shew this fact when sued on the acceptance by the indorsee, and it will then be a question whether the acceptor meant to give currency to the bill in spite of the forgery, in which case he will be liable upon it.

Where the drawing is by procuration, the acceptor only admits the authority to draw, but not that to indorse. When the bill is drawn in a fictitious name, the acceptor undertakes to pay to an indorsement by the same hand.

If the acceptor's name be written by some other person, and the acceptor afterwards gives currency to the bill by admitting it to be his own, or treating it as such, or ratifying the act, he is liable.

10. An acceptor may be discharged by a holder expressly renouncing his claim, and for the whole amount, and this may be before or after the bill is due. The renunciation may be verbal, or in writing, or by cancelling the acceptance. But if it be verbal, or by writing separate from the bill, and before due, it will not affect the right of any person to whom the holder may transfer for value and without notice. (See chap. xi.)

If a third person cancel the acceptance, the acceptor will only be discharged if it was done by the consent of the holder.

The holder may of course lose his claim on the acceptor by taking a new security in the place of the old one;-so easy is this that, if there are two joint acceptors, the separate note of one of them may be a renunciatior. of the holder's rights against the other.

No one can discharge the acceptor but the holder, or some one authorized by him.

11. The question, who may accept? depends upon the question upon whom the bill is drawn? If upon a single individual, who refuses to accept, no one else can accept, unless, as before mentioned (sec. 8), for the honor of the drawer; if upon two or more persons in partnership, any one partner can (see chap. ii) bind the firm; but if upon several persons not partners, they must every one accept, or the bill may be treated as dishonored; but those who accept will be bound.



1. Always desirable, sometimes necessary—nonce of refusal.

2. Presentment, how to be made.

3. When excused.

1. Every bill should be presented by the holder for acceptance without delay, for if the bill be accepted, he has the acceptor's security; and if the acceptance be refused, then the prior parties become immediately liable.

For this purpose, in the event of refusal, notice of non-acceptance, i. e. of dishonor, should at once be given. Though presentment for acceptance is always desirable, and though upon non-acceptance prior parties are always chargeable, yet it is only in case of bills payable at sight, or a certain period after sight, that such presentment is absolutely necessary. But in all bills the holder may suffer for neglecting to present if he has been cautioned by the drawer to do so.

2. To procure the drawee's acceptance, the bill should be taken within a reasonable time, at business hours, to the place of business of the drawee, or his residence as described on the bill, or his other known place of abode, or such other place as he may have removed to in the neighbourhood, and it must there be presented to the drawee, or his authorized agent.

If the drawee have absconded, such presentment is excused. It is likewise excused by illness, or any other accident not attributable to negligence in the holder.

The drawee may keep the bill twenty-four hours for deliberation, but if he keeps it longer, prior parties should have notice, in order to make them chargeable.

If the drawee be dead, the bill should be presented to his personal representative.

3. Presentment of bills payable at or after sight is excused by their being in circulation.



1. Necessity of.

2. How to be made.

3. Presentment of Bills payable at sight, how excused. 4. Other circumstances which excuse Presentment.

5. Where to be made.

6. Of days of grace.

7. Within what time Bills and Notes should be presented. 8. Rule does not generally apply to Note payable on demand. 9. Drawee's Bankruptcy, &c., no excuse.

1. It is not in general necessary, in order to charge the acceptor or maker of a bill or note, that it should be

presented to him for payment when due or at any time after. An action may at once be brought.

[But a bill or note, payable at or after sight, must be presented in order to charge the acceptor or maker. And a bill accepted payable at a particular place and there only, and a note made in the body of it payable at a particular place, must be presented at that place in order to charge the acceptor or maker. (See ss. 2 and 4.)]

The consequence of a bill or note being not duly presented for payment to the acceptor or maker is, that all the antecedent parties will be discharged from their liability, whether on the instrument or on the consideration for which it was given.

The rules relating to presentment for payment will therefore require attention.

2. Presentment for payment (unlike presentment for acceptance) need not be personal, for it is enough if the bill or note be shewn to a wife, servant, or clerk of the acceptor, at his residence or place of business. It is the duty of the acceptor to provide for payment if he be absent himself.

When a bill is payable at sight, presentment for payment and acceptance are identical, at all events as to time, and therefore presentment for payment will, as well as that for acceptance, be excused by putting such bills in circulation. (See chap. vii, sect. 3.)

The acceptor of a bill is always liable upon it after due, whether presented or not; but it is absolutely essential, in order to make the other parties liable upon the bill, that it should be presented to the acceptor for payment on the day when it falls due. (But see sect. 5.)

3. The case of a bill payable at sight, or at a certain time after sight, and kept in circulation, differs, as we have seen, from the case of ordinary bills; for, however long a bill payable at or after sight may have circulated, the holder in whose hands it ultimately finds itself may present, and in default of payment by the acceptor, may recover against the other parties.

4. There are a few other circumstances which are said to excuse the holder from presenting for payment, i. e. circumstances under which he may still sue the prior parties, though the bill may not have been presented for payment at maturity.

The principal of these are, where the drawee absconds,

(though not where he merely changes his residence ;) where the bill is actually lost; and where it has been seized by the Crown under a form of execution called an extent.

5. As to the place where the bill may be presented for payment, this depends on the form of the acceptance. (See chap. vi.) With reference to place, there are three modes of acceptance: (1) the general acceptance, by writing the word "Accepted," and signing the acceptor's name; (2) by adding after the word "Accepted," and before signature, the words "payable at A. B. and Co.'s;" (3) by adding to the last-named form the words "and there only," or equivalent words. (See chap. vi.)

The effect of the first is that the bill must be presented to the acceptor at his residence or place of business, or if he have neither, then to him personally.

In the second case, the bill may be presented either at the bank named, or at the acceptor's residence or place of business. But in order to change the drawer or indorsers of a bill, or the indorsers of a note, it must, even in this case, have been presented at the place specified.

And in the last case, the bill can only be effectually presented at the bank mentioned.

Where no day is named on which a bill or note falls due, it is payable on demand, the same as if so expressed.

A bill, though drawn in the body of it payable at a particular place, will be payable anywhere unless expressed to be payable there only; but a note made, in the body of it, payable at a particular place, though not expressed to be payable there only, must be presented at the particular place.

6. With respect to bills or notes payable at a specific time, as, for instance, six months after date, and also in case of a bill payable after sight, three days are added to the time when the bill or note nominally becomes payable, so that if a bill be on its face payable on the 3d of the month, it will not really be payable till the 6th, and that is the day on which it must be presented.

These three days are called "days of grace," and are different in different countries, being dependent on the custom of merchants, incorporated into the law of the land. A presentment for payment before the expiration of these days is premature.

When the last day of grace falls on a Sunday, Christ

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