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Every "bearer" of a bill within the meaning of the § 2. definition in clause (d) of this section, is the holder of it: Howard v. Godard, 9 N. B. (4 Allen) 452 (1860).

"Indorsement" means an

(h) The expression indorsement completed by delivery;

Indorsement, as its derivation and meaning would indicate, is generally made by writing the name of the transferrer on the back of the bill; but it may be written on any other portion of it. "It is quite immaterial whether the indorsement be written on the back of the instrument or on the face," as said by Lord Campbell in Young v. Glover, 3 Jur. N. S. 637 (1857). See also Partridge v. Davis, 20 Vt. 499 (1848); Herring v. Wood. hull, 29 Ill. 92 (1862); Haines v. Dubois, 30 N. J., 259 (1863); Arnot v. Symonds, 85 Penn. St., 99 (1877). In certain cases it may be written on an allonge or on a copy of the bill: section 32 (a).

In the Act the word is not applied to this writing alone, but only when followed and completed by the delivery of the bill to another, which makes the contract of the indorser complete and irrevocable section 21. Delivery is here used in the sense indicated in clause (ƒ) of this section. The requisites of a valid endorsement to operate as a negotiation of a bill are set out in section 21.

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(i) The expression "Issue means the first "Issue." delivery of a bill or note, complete in form, to a person who takes it as a holder;


"Issue" is used only a few times in the Act. Interest runs from the "issue of an undated bill when it is expressed to be payable with interest, without saying from what time section 9, s-s. 3. : As to the effect of inserting

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a wrong date of issue when a bill has been issued undated, see section 12. As to the re-issue of a bill, see section 37. Where a bill drawn in one country is payable, negotiated or accepted in another, it may become of importance to determine the place of issue: section 71. A bill is complete in form when it complies with section 3, and a note when it complies with section 82. For the definition of person" see the note at the end of the present section.


(j) The expression "Value" means valuable


The term "valuable consideration" is defined in section


(4) The expression "Defence" includes counterclaim.


The word "defence " is used in sections 30, s-s. 5 and 38 (b). For a definition of counter-claim see note to clause (b) of this section. "Defence Iwould also include in Quebec an incidental demand by a defendant: C. C. P. Art. 151.

The foregoing definitions are taken from the corresponding section of the Imperial Act, almost without change. "Banker" in the Imperial Act has been replaced by "Bank" in the Canadian, for the reasons above mentioned. "Bankrupt" is not used in the Canadian Act as we have no general bankrupt or insolvent law in force in the Dominion. "Person ""written " and " writing," which are all used in a peculiar sense, are defined in the Imperial Act, but not in the Canadian, as they are defined in the general Interpretation Act, R. S. C. c. 1, s. 7, as follows:

"(22) The expression "person" includes any body> corporate and politic, or party, and the heirs, executors,

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administrators or other legal representatives of such § 2. person, to whom the context can apply according to the law of that part of Canada to which such context extends." (23) The expression "writing," written," or any term of like import, includes words printed, painted, engraved, lithographed, or otherwise traced or copied."

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The only one of the foregoing definitions not in the Imperial Act is that of "defence." This section is another illustration of the fact that the original portions of the Canadian Act were not prepared or arranged with the same care as must have characterized the preparation of the Imperial Act. In the latter the words defined are all arranged alphabetically. Those copied from it in the Canadian Act follow the same order; but the word "defence" which has been added, instead of being inserted in its proper alphabetical place comes after "value." Another change which is scarcely an improvement, is the insertion of the words "The expression " at the commencement of each definition, while in the Imperial Act each clause begins with the word to be defined. If any prefix was thought necessary, it would have been more appropriate to have used "the word " rather than "the expression," as in each instance it is a single word that is defined.



The Act as its title indicates, relates to Bills of Exchange, Cheques and Promissory Notes. The rules and principles relating to the former are set out in Part II, which embraces sections 3 to 71 inclusive.

Section 72 defines a cheque as a bill of exchange drawn on a bank payable on demand, and enacts that the provisions of the Act applicable to a bill of exchange payable on demand shall apply to a cheque, except as otherwise provided in Part III.

By section 88 the provisions of the Act relating to bills of exchange apply to promissory notes with the necessary modifications, and subject to the exceptions of that section and the provisions of Part IV.

In the notes and illustrations appended to the various sections of Part II of the Act, where a clause or provision is equally applicable to a promissory note or cheque as well as to a bill, authorities and cases bearing upon the principle will be cited, although they may have been laid down or decided with reference to notes or cheques.

The foregoing clause is copied from the Imperial Act without change. Probably no definition of a bill of exchange has yet been given which is not open to criticism. The phraseology of this section is not the most felicitous, as the next clause almost discredits the definition in two respects. First, a bill of exchange must be "unconditional," yet the next sentence speaks of the "conditions," of which there appear to be no less than six. Again, the introduction of the words "except as hereinafter provided" is an intimation that certain instruments which do not meet the requirements of the definition are nevertheless bills of exchange.

This definition also includes a cheque and is declaratory of the former law: McLean v. Clydesdale Banking Co., 9 App. Cas. per Lord Blackburn at p. 106 (1883).


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3. A bill of exchange is an unconditional order Bill of Exin writing, addressed by one person to another, fined. signed by the person giving it, requiring the person to whom it is addressed to pay, on demand or at a fixed or determinable future time, a sum certain in money to or to the order of a specified person, or to bearer: Imp. Act, s. 3 (1).

The Civil Code of Lower Canada says: "Article 2279. A bill of exchange is a written order by one person to another for the payment of money absolutely and at all events. Article 2280.-It is essential to a bill of exchange: That it be in writing and contain the signature or name of the drawer; That it be for the payment of a specific sum of money only; That it be payable at all events without any condition."


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§ 3.

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