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.
If the debtor and creditor have agreed upon the place at which payment is to be made, the debtor must make payment at such place and the creditor must receive payment at such place in the absence of some other or further agreement.1 If, by the agreement of the parties, the note is payable at some bank in a specified place and the creditor leaves the state without taking the note with him and refusing to designate a bank at which such payment is to be made, the debtor may select the bank at which he will make payment;2 and payment thus made prevents the creditor from exercising his option under the original contract to declare all the notes of a series due upon default in the payment of one.3
13 St. Paul National Bank v. Cannon, 46 Minn. 95, 24 Am. St. Rep. 180, 48 N. W. 526; Kohl v. Beach, 107 Wis. 400, 50 L. R. A. 600, 83 N. W. 657.
14 Hill v. Arnold, 116 Ga. 45, 42 S. E. 475; Moore v. Tate, 63 Va. (22 Gratt.) 351.
15 Bank v. Hart, 37 Neb. 197, 40 Am. St. Rep. 470, 20 L. R. A. 780, 55 N. W. 631.
16 Langdale v. Citizens' Bank, 121 Ga. 105, 104 Am. St. Rep. 94, 60 L. R. A. 341, 48 S. E. 708.
17 Langdale v. Citizens' Bank, 121 Ga. 105, 104 Am. St. Rep. 04, 60 L. R. A. 341, 48 S. E. 708.
1 Thorn v. City Rice Mills, 40 Ch. D. 357; Taylor v. Munger, 169 N. Car. 727, 86 S. E. 626; Stansbury v. Embrey, 128 Tenn. 103, 47 L. R. A* (N.S.) 080, 158 S. W. 001.
2 Stansbury v. Embrey, 128 Tenn. 103, 47 L. R. A. (N.S.) 0S0, 153 S. W. 001.
3 Stansbury v. Embrey, 128 Tenn. 103, 47 L. R. A. (N.S.) 080, 158 S. W. 001.
If no place for the payment of the debt has been agreed upon, the debt is said to be payable at the domicile of the creditor,4 or at his place of business,5 or at his domicile or place of business at the election of the debtor.6 While the rights of the parties on questions of this sort have not been worked out in detail, the debtor has probably the right to pay any debt at the creditor's place of business if he has a place of business; if it is a business debt as distinguished from a personal debt, the debtor is probably bound to pay at the place of business and he has no right to pay at the creditor's domicile; while if it is a personal debt as distinguished from a business debt, the debtor has probably a right to pay the creditor at his domicile if he selects a reasonable time for making such payment. In any event, if the debtor wishes to avoid default, it is his duty to seek the creditor either at his place of business or domicile, as the case may be, and to make payment there.7 The fact that he is ready and willing to pay will not prevent him from being in default.
The fact that the creditor has been in the habit of coming to collect debts from the debtor does not give the debtor any vested right in such method of collection; and upon reasonable notice of change in the method of doing business the creditor may require the debtor to pay a business debt at the creditor's place of business.8 Unless notice of such change in the method of collecting debts is given, however, the creditor can not forfeit the rights of the debtor by omitting to come to the debtor to receive payment,9 although it is possible that for other purposes the debtor might be treated as being in default.
It is also said that the debtor may pay the creditor wherever he may find the creditor;10 and this is probably true if a reasonable time and place are selected by the debtor for the purpose of making such payment.
4 German National Bank v. Zimmer, 141 Ky. 401, 132 S. W. 1023; State v. District Court, 55 Mont. 330, 176 Pac 613; Jones v. Main Island Creek Coal Co., - W. Va. - , 99 S. E. 462.
5 Magruder v. Cumberland Telephone & Telegraph Co., 92 Miss. 716, 16 L. R. A. (N.S.) 560, 46 So. 404; State v. Kenosha Home Telephone Co., 158 Wis. 371, 148 N. W. 877.
6 Esmay v. Gordon, 18 111. 483. So by statute, State v. District Court, 55 Mont. 330, 176 Pac. 613.
7 Danger V. Dorr, 72 W. Va. 430, 78 8. E. 367; Jones v. Main Island Creek
Coal Co., - W. Va. - , 99 S. E. 462.
8 Magruder v. Cumberland Telephone & Telegraph Co., 92 Miss. 716, 16 L. R. A. (N.S.) 560, 46 So. 404; State v. Kenosha Home Telephone Co., 158 Wis. 371, 148 N. W. 877.
9 Union Central Life Ins. Co, v. Pott-ker. 33 O. S. 459.
Fee also, Manhattan Life Ins. Co. V. Smith, 44 O. S. 156.
10 Wiener v. American Ins. Co., 224 Pa. St. 292, 73 Atl. 443.
See also, Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Ry. v. Sturm, 174 U. S. 710, 43 L. ed. 1144.
In most of the foregoing cases the rule that the debt is payable at the domicile of the creditor or at his place of business was laid down without discussing the duty of the debtor to leave the state and to seek the creditor elsewhere. It has been said that if the creditor leaves the state and does not appoint an agent in the state to receive payment, the debtor is not bound to follow him outside of the state in order to make payment.11 This principle has been applied for the purpose of declaring that interest upon the debt stops if the creditor has left the state before the maturity of the debt and has left no agent to receive payment.12 This principle has also been applied where the creditor was a non-resident when the debt was incurred;13 and it is held that the failure of the debtor to leave the state and to tender payment at the residence of the creditor does not authorize the creditor to exercise an option to declare the entire debt due upon default in payment of interest.14