SEC. 15. Where an incomplete instrument has not been delivered it will not, if completed and negotiated, without authority, be a valid contract in the hands of any holder, as against any person whose signature was placed thereon before delivery.
SEC. 16. Every contract on a negotiable instrument is incomplete and revocable until delivery of the instrument for the purpose of giving effect thereto. As between immediate parties, and as regards a remote party other than a holder in due course, the delivery, in order to be effectual, must be made either by or under the authority of the party making, drawing, accepting or indorsing, as the case may be; and in such case the delivery may be shown to have been conditional or for a special purpose only, and not for the purpose of transferring the property in instrument. But where the instrument is in the hands of a holder in due course, a valid delivery thereof by all parties prior to him so as to make them liable to him, is conclusively presumed. And where the instrument is no longer in the possession of party whose signature appears thereon, a valid and intentional delivery by him is presumed until the contrary is proved.
SEC. 17. Where the language of the instrument is ambiguous, or there are omissions therein the following rules of construction apply:
1. 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 sum payable; but if the words are ambiguous or uncertain, reference may be bad to the figures to fix the amount.
2. Where the instrument provides for the payment of interest, without specifying the date from which interest is to run, the interest runs from the date of the instrument, and if the instrument is undated, from the issue thereof.
3. Where the instrument is not dated, it will be considered to be dated as of the time it was issued.
4. Where there is conflict between the written and printed provisions of the instrument, the written provisions prevail.
5. Where the instrument is so ambiguous that there is doubt whether it is a bill or a note, the holder may treat it as either, at his election.
6. Where a signature is so placed upon the instrument that it is not clear in what capacity the person making the same intended to sign, he is to be deemed an indorser.
7. Where an instrument containing the words "I promise to pay" is signed by two or more persons, they are deemed to be jointly and severally liable thereon.
SEC. 18. No person is liable on the instrument whose signature does not appear thereon, except as herein otherwise expressly provided. But one who signs in a trade or assumed name will be liable to the same extent as if he had signed his own name.
SEC. 19. The signature of any party may be made by a duly authorized agent. No particular form of appointment is necessary for this purpose; and the authority of the agent may be established as in other cases of agency.
SEC. 20. Where the instrument contains, or a person adds to his signature, words indicating that he signs for or on behalf of the principal, or in a representative capacity, he is not liable on the instrument if he was duly authorized; but the mere addition of words describing him as agent, or as filling a representative character, without disclosing his principal, does not exempt him from personal liability.
SEC. 21. A signature by "procuration" operates as notice that the agent has but limited authority to sign, and the principal is bound in case the agent in so signing acted within the actual limits of his authority.
SEC. 22. The indorsement or assignment of the instrument by a corporation or by an infant passes the property therein, notwithstanding that from want of capacity the corporation or infant may incur no liability thereon.
SEC. 23. Where a signature is forged or made without authority it is wholly inoperative, and no right to retain the instrument or to give a discharge therefor or to enforce payment thereof against any party thereto, can be acquired through or under such signature, unless the party against whom it is sought to enforce such right is precluded from setting up the forgery or want of authority.
SEC. 24. Every negotiable instrument is deemed prima facie to have been issued for a valuable consideration, and every person whose signature appears thereon to have become a party thereto for value.
SEC. 25. Value is any consideration sufficient to support a simple contract.
2. An antecedent or pre-existing debt constitutes value and is deemed such, whether the instrument is payable on demand or at a future time.
SEC. 26. Where value has at any time been given for the instrument, the holder is deemed a holder for value in respect to all parties who became such prior to that time.
SEC. 27. Whether the holder has a lien on the instrument, arising either from contract or by implication of law, he is deemed a holder for value to the extent of his lien.
SEC. 28. Absence or failure of consideration is a matter of defense as against any person not a holder in due course, and partial failure of consideration is a defense pro tanto, whether the failure is an ascertained and liquidated amount or otherwise.
SEC. 29. An accommodation party is one who has signed the instrument as maker, drawer, acceptor, or indorser, for the purpose of lending his name to some other person. Such a person is liable on the instrument to a holder for value, notwithstanding such holder at the time of taking the instrument knew him to be only an accommodation party.