This section is from the book "The Law Of Contracts", by William Herbert Page. Also available from Amazon: Commercial Contracts: A Practical Guide to Deals, Contracts, Agreements and Promises.
Questions of construction are generally controlled by the law of the place of performance.1 Thus an insurance policy payable in England is governed by English law as to the meaning of the term " in collision."2 So a contract of guaranty dated in Illinois, signed in Michigan, mailed from Michigan to the guarantee in Illinois, and payable if at all in Illinois, was controlled as to the liability of the guarantor by Illinois law.'3 If a contract of insurance is made where the insured is domiciled and is there to be performed, the law of that state controls as to the meaning of the word " heirs " used in the policy to indicate the beneficiaries, though the insured removes his domicile to another state after taking such policy and before his death.4 If a contract is to be performed in part in one place and in part in another, the law of each place governs as to the construction of that part there to be performed.5 The question as to what constitutes such change of possession as to pass title to personalty under a contract of sale is controlled by the law of the place where the personalty is situated, as it is performable there.6 A contract for insuring valuable packages during transportation, which provides that they are to be "sealed by an adult," impliedly requires them to be sealed at the place of business of the insured, which in, this case was in Mexico, though the transportation, covered by the insurance began and ended within Arizona; and hence while they must be actually sealed in Mexico, the law of Mexico determines who is an adult.7 In some cases the view has been expressed that the law of the place of making the contract controls its construction.8 Thus the interpretation of a contract of insurance is said to be controlled by the law of the state where it takes effect.9
Indiana. Indiana law controlled in a suit in Wisconsin.)
11 Case v. Heffner, 10 Ohio 180.
12 Spies v. Bank, 174 N. Y. 222; 61 L. R. A. 193; 66 N. E. 736.
1 London Assurance v. Compan-hia de Moagens, 167 U. S. 149; Cox v. United States, 6 Pet. (U. S.) 172; Abt v. Bank, 159 111. 467; 50 Am. St. Bep. 175; 42 N. E. 856; Banco de Sonora v. Casualty Co., - la. - ; 95 N. W. 232; Alexandria, etc., R. R. v. Johnson, 61 Kan. 417; 59 Pac. 1063; Farmer v. Etheridge (Ky.), 69 S. W. 761; Stevens v. Gregg, 89 Ky. 461; 12 S. W. 775; Shoe, etc., Bank v. Wood, 142 Mass. 563; 8 N. E. 753; Tolman Co. t. Reed, 115 Mich. 71; 72 N. W. 1104; Stahl v. Mitchell, 41 Minn. 325; 43 N. W. 385; St. Nicholas Bank v.
National Bank, 128 N. Y. 26; 13 L. R. A. 241; 27 N. E. 849; Baum v. Birchall, 150 Pa. St. 164; 30 Am. St. Rep. 797; 24 Atl. 620; Robinson v. Queen. 87 Tenn. 445; 10 Am. St. Rep. 690; 3 L. R. A. 214; 11 S. W. 38.
2 London Assurance v. Compan-hia de Moagens, 167 U. S. 149.
3 Tolman Co. v. Reed, 115 Mich. 71; 72 N. W. 1104. (The Michigan court had held the guarantor liable under its own law, Tolman v. Griffin, 111 Mich. 301; 69 N. W. 649, while the Illinois courts had held him not liable, Tolman Co. v. Rice, 164 111. 255; 45 N. E. 496.)
4 Mullen v. Reed, 64 Conn. 240: 42 Am. St. Rep. 174; 24 L. R. A. 664; 29 Atl. 478.