(2) Draft or order drawn by any banker in the United Kingdom upon any other banker in the United Kingdom, not payable to bearer or to order, and used solely for the purpose of settling or clearing any account between such bankers.
(3) Letter written by a banker in the United Kingdom to any other banker in the United Kingdom, directing the payment of any sum of money, the same not being payable to bearer or to order, and such letter not being sent or delivered to the person to whom payment is to be made, or to any person on his behalf.
(4) Letter of credit granted in the United Kingdom, authorizing drafts to be drawn out of the United Kingdom payable in the United Kingdom.
(5) Draft or order drawn by the Paymaster-General on behalf of the Court of Chancery in England, or by the Accountant-General of the Supreme Court of Judicature in Ireland.
(6) Warrant or order for the payment of any annuity granted by the National Debt Commissioners, or for the payment of any dividend or interest on any share in the Government or Parliamentary stocks or funds.
(7) Bill drawn by any person under the authority of the Admiralty upon and payable by the Accountant-General of the Navy.
(8) Bill drawn (according to a form prescribed by Her Majesty's orders by any person duly authorized to draw the same) upon and payable out of any public account for any pay or allowance of the army or auxiliary forces or for any other expenditure connected therewith.
(9) Draft or order drawn upon any banker in the United Kingdom by an officer of a public department of the State for the payment of money out of a public account.
(10) Bill drawn in the United Kingdom for the sole purpose of remitting money to be placed to any account of public revenue.
(11) Coupon or warrant for interest attached to and issued with any security, or with an agreement or memorandum for the renewal or extension of time for payment of a security.
By Sect. 40 of the Finance Act, 1895 (57 and 58 Vict. c. 30), it is enacted that "A coupon for interest, on a marketable security as denned by the Stamp Act, 1891, being one of a set of coupons, whether issued with the security, or subsequently issued in a sheet, shall not be chargeable with any stamp duty."
By the Friendly Societies Act, 1896 (59 and 60 Vict. c. 25, s. 33), cheques drawn by Friendly Societies, registered under the Act, upon their bankers are exempt from stamp duty.
The stamp duty upon the protest of any bill of exchange or promissory note is:
When the duty on the bill or note does not exceed 1s., the same duty as the bill or note.
In any other case............1s.
Until 1895 a receipt written upon a duly stamped bill of exchange or promissory note did not require a receipt stamp, but this was altered by Sect. 9 of the Finance Act, 1895, and such receipts must now bear a penny stamp in addition to the stamp on the bill or note, "provided that neither the name of a banker (whether accompanied by words of receipt or not), written upon a bill of exchange or promissory note duly stamped, nor the name of payee written upon a draft or order if payable to order shall constitute a receipt chargeable with duty."
A person under the age of twenty-one years who has signed a bill whether as drawer, accepter, or endorser, is not liable on the bill and cannot successfully be sued upon it; but he can transfer a good title, and a holder in due course who holds a bill signed by a minor as drawer or endorser, is entitled to receive payment of the bill, and to enforce it against any other party thereto.
When a bill has been lost before it is overdue, the person who was the holder of it may apply to the drawer to give him another bill of the same tenour, giving security to the drawer, if required, to indemnify him against all persons whatever in case the bill alleged to have been lost shall be found again.
If the drawer on request as aforesaid refuses to give such duplicate bill, he may be compelled to do so. When the loss is discovered, the person who was the holder should at once give notice to the accepter and the latter should inform the bank where the bill is made payable, and request it to refuse payment. Any person, however, who has given value for the bill not knowing it to have been stolen, can compel the accepter to pay the amount of the bill, providing it is in order and the endorsements are genuine.
A country banker gave change for a Bank of England note for £100 which had been stolen. It was done at the time of the races, and immediately on opening the bank. The party who brought it stated he had some bets to pay at the racecourse, and gave a fictitious address, which was written on the note. The loser of the note brought an action against the banker, and recovered the amount. The judge who tried the cause stated that in his opinion there had been laches, i.e., neglect on the part of the bankers in not making further inquiry, and under his direction the jury returned a verdict for the plaintiff.
Referring to the above decision, Serjeant Byles observes: -
"But it is now definitely settled that if a man takes honestly an instrument made or become payable to bearer, he has a good title to it, with whatever degree of negligence he may have acted, unless his gross negligence induce the jury to find fraud."1 "I believe," says Lord Denman, "we are all of opinion that gross negligence only would not be a sufficient answer by the defendant when the plaintiff has given consideration for the bill. Gross negligence may be evidence of mala fides, but it is not the same thing."
The following case was tried in the Court of Queen's Bench: -
1 Byles on Bills of Exchange, 15th ed., p. 187.
The question involved was the right of money-changers to take Bank of England notes in disregard of notices that they had been stolen. The action was brought by Messrs. Adam Spielmann and Co., of London, as correspondents of Messrs. Meyer Spielmann and Co., of Paris, to recover the amount of two Bank of England notes for £500 each, which had formed portions of notes, for the value in all of £3,000, stolen from Messrs. Brown, Shipley, and Co., of Liverpool. The notes were stolen in November, 1852, and it was proved that notices of the robbery were delivered at the places of business of both firms. One of the notes was alleged to have been received by Meyer Spielmann and Co., in Paris, from a person giving the name of G. F. Howard, and the other from A. Monteaux, a money-changer in Paris, which note also had the name of G. F. Howard upon it. Both notes were remitted by Messrs. Meyer Spielmann and Co. to Messrs. Adam Spielmann and Co., and received by them in London. On behalf of the plaintiff it was contended that, the notes having been taken in the ordinary course of business, he was entitled to recover upon them. Lord Campbell left to the jury the question whether Meyer Spielmann took the notes bond fide and for value; whether Adam Spielmann received them bond fide as a remittance; and whether the notices were left at the places of business of both parties. The jury found that Meyer Spielmann and Co. did not take the notes bond fide for value; that Adam Spielmann and Co. did take them bond fide as a remittance; and that the notices were duly received. Upon this finding, Lord Campbell directed a verdict to be entered for the Bank of England."