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Note. The foregoing is all that the limits of this work will admit, and it is presumed to be sufficient, without going into a detailed illustration of partnership accounts, to enable the scholar to conduct a set of books with accuracy. The judicious teacher may multiply examples at his pleasure, and if he please, introduce company accounts, and foreiga shipping accounts, all of which are conducted upon the same principles exhibited in the above examples.
A SERIES OF FORMS OF NOTES, RECEIPTS, BONDS, DEEDS, &c.
WITH OBSERVATIONS ILLUSTRATIVE OF THEIR NATURE, AND
USAGE:-EXHIBITING A SPECIES OF KNOW-
1. PROMISORY NOTES. Note 1. A promisory note is a written evidence of debt, with an engagement to pay. Although the practice of different commercial communities, has given to instruments of this kind a variety of forms, yet in law they are all regarded as belonging to the same species of obligation.
1. FORM OF A NOTE ON DEMAND. $100.00. For value received, I promise to pay A B, or order, one hundred dollars on demand, with interest. PP.
Utica, July 4, 1886. NOTE 2. In the form of this note, and, indeed, of all instruments of the kind, there are several particulars which should always be expressed in words, and others which may stand in figures. Among the former, may be classed the following:—The amount to be paid; the time when payment is to be made; the place where the payment is to be made, if any is designated, the place where, and the month when the note is made, and the payee and payor's names should be written plain and in full, so as to leave no doubt of their identity. Of the latter, the day of the month on which the note is made, and also the year may stand in figures. The amount for which the note is given, is likewise expressed in figures on the margin for ready reference.
For value received, is usually expressed, though not absolutely necessary, for the law presumes that all notes and bills of exchange are given for a valuable consideration. With interest, is also written; but the law presumes the note to have been demanded when due, and awards interest accordingly. The phrase, or order, makes the note negotiable; A B may put his name on the back of it, that is, endorse it, and pass it off as a bank bill. He, however, is liable to pay the note to the holder thereof if PP neglects to pay. A B however may, by agreement, write above his name, without the guarantee of, which exhonerates him from all responsibility. The note is subject to any just offset in the hands of P P, against A B, until he shall have received notice of its transfer.
2. FORM OF A NOTE ON TIME. One day after date, for value received, I promise to pay A B, or bearer, at my store in Utica, one hundred dollars, with interest. Utica, July 4, 1886.
P P. $100.00. Note. This form is often used, and frequently found more convenient than the first form; it is negotiable without the endorsement of A B, and may pass into many hands, any or all of whom may present it for payment to P P.; and no offset in his hands will lie, unless it be against him who collects it, and possession, before a suit at law is commenced,
By the adoption of this form, however, the guarantee of A B
is lost, for he is not under the necessity of endorsing it in order to render it negotiable.
3. FORM OF NOTE ON SETTLEMENT OF ACCOUNT. $100.00. This day reckoned and settled book accounts with A B, and found due to him a balance of one hundred dollars, which I hereby promise to pay to him or his order, in sixty days from date, with interest. Utica, July 4, 1886.
P P. Note. This form is well adapted to the purposes for which it is given; to wit: the balance due A B on settlement of account. It saves the trouble of separate receipts, for when paid and preserved, it refers to the settlement, and answers all the ends of a receipt in full of accounts. On a settlement of accounts, it is also safe for the parties to record that settlement in their respective books, signed by both parties, with the entry of the proper date. It is also safe for each party to enter in full each item that goes to make the balance, that the whole may appear and remain open for subsequent investigation, if necessary. It is P P’s business to look up his note, and pay it off at the close of sixty days, or he subjects himself to the cost of a suit; for although it is customary for the holder of the note to present it for payment, yet he is not legally bound to do so. As a receipt, this note cuts off all causes of action, for debt on account, uniess it can be made to appear fully, that an error had been committed in the settlement.
4. PROMISORY NOTE ON TIME.
$100.00. Ninety days after dale, for value received, I promise to pay to the order of A B, at the bank of Utica, one hundred dollars.
P P. Utica, July 4, 1886. Note. This is the ordinary form of a note designed to be discounted, and subsequently paid at the Bank. To effect which A B endorses it, and if necessary, other endorsers are obtained, all of whom are liable to the bank, and the promisor, P P, is liable to all the endorsers. If P P is unable to pay, then the firsi endorser is liable to the others; and if he is unable, then the second is liable; hence, the last endorser incurs the least responsibility.
It is incumbent upon the bank, however, in order to secure the endorser's liability, to have the note protested by a notary public, for non-payment on the evening of the day on which it is payable, (which by custom is three days after it falls due,) and to give notice in writing to each of the endorsers. If the written notice and protest are neglected or delayed, the endorsers are exhonerated, unless they shall have previously waved notice, by written agreement.
The three days which the note runs beyond the stipulated time of ninety days, before it is payable, are called days of grace. They are in fact a mere mercantile regulation, and always allowed unless relinquished by special stipulation.
In computing time, the day on which the note is made is not included, but if payment
falls due on Sunday, it must be made on Saturday, or protest insues.
5. A JOINT AND SEVERAL NOTE BY THREE PERSONS,
$100.00. For value received, we jointly and severally promise to pay to the order of A B, at the bank of Utica, four months after date, one hundred dollars.
PP. Utica, July 4, 1886.
D D. Note. This obligation is transferable by A B's endorsment, who, with all the parties on its face, are alike liable to the holder, either separately or collectively, and the promisors are alike holden to A B, if he pays it as endorsor. Should the holder resort to a suit to recover the above note, and the parties deny their signatures, it will be incumbent on him to prove their names by some competent witness, conversant with their writing. Formerly it was customary to call a witness to test notes of hand, but the practice was attended with some dificulty, and has therefore gone out
6. NOTE OF HAND FOR A SPECIFIC ARTICLE. Six months after date, I promise to pay A B, at his store in Utica, one hundred bushels of merchantable wheat, at ninetyfive cents a bushel. Utica, July 4, 1886. 100 bushels wheat.
PP. Note. This note is not negotiable, for all negotiable paper must be made payable in money only. A B, however, can assign his interest in the note by a written tranfer on the back of it, or on a separate piece of paper. Nevertheless, should the holder resort to a suit for its recovery, the action must be brought in the name of A B, and will be subject to any offset in the hands of P P prior to its transfer, and even to the date of the suit, unless A B or the holder shall have given P P due notice of the transfer.
Should P P refuse or neglect to deliver the wheat of the kind specified, and at the place and time designated, (and no days of grace attach to this obligation,) he violates his contract, and the holder may demand the money. Had no price been named for the wheat, and had the article risen or fallen in market, then the market price at the time for delivery would fix the amount of money designed as an equivalent. Hence, it is always safe for the price of the commodity to be named in the note. In fact, every paper instrument, intended to record the negotiations and transactions of men, should express unequivocally, what it is intended to import-nothing more and nothing less.
It may also be observed, that, as A B is not bound to receive the wheat after the expiration of the time specified, so neither is he obliged to receive it, though tendered to him at an earlier day. Nevertheless, the mutual verbal agreement of the parties, well attested, is sufficient to alter any or all of the conditions of the note, and even to annihilate it, provided it is not sealed as well as signed.
Note 1. A receipt is a dicharge from debt either in full or in part. It should always express, in clear and unambiguous language and plain terms, the precise object for which it is made; after all, it is subject, in its most perfect form and style, to have the evidence which it carries upon its face, explained and even done away by force of facts.
1. RECEIPT FOR MONEY ON ACCOUNT. Received, July 4, 1886, of A B, the sum of one hundred dollars, to apply on account. $100.00.
PP. Note. This is an ordinary receipt for money, paid on a common running account. It is a full discharge from debt to A B, for the amount specified; nevertheless, should any or all of the money, on subsequent examination, be found spurious, the receipt would be a discharge no further than the money proved good, for A B, upon satisfactory identity, is accountable for the bad money, not only as a matter of debt to PP, but as a matter of fraud to the public.-To exhonerate himself from these accountabilities, he must make the money good to P P, and give a satisfactory account of the manner in which he possessed himself of the spurious money. For the safe keeping of this and all other similar discharges from debt, it should be written in a book prepared and kept for the purpose, and styled a Receipt Book.
2. A RECEIPT IN FULL. Received, Utica, July 4, 1886, of A B, the sum of one dollar, in full of all demands to this date. $1.00.
P P. Note. This form of a receipt, is a full discharge from debt of every kind, and the strongest and safest, of a specific nature, that can be written, unless objections should lie against the amount said to have been received. Strong, however, as it is, P P may control it by positive proof that an error has occurred in the settlement of the accounts, out of which the receipt grew, which would materially change the result. Now as all receipts are subjects of examination and revision, and under the control of superior evidence, it seems safe to all parties concerned, to express the precise amount receiv. ed, rather than any indifferent sum. A receipt should be a brief, but exact history of the transaction to which it refers; any thing less or more mars its object,
3. A PARTIAL PAYMENT ON A NOTE OR BOND, $50.00. Received, Utica July 4, 1886, of A B, fifty dollars in part payment of the within obligation. PP.
Note. Endorsements of partial payments are frequently made without the signature of the receiver attached; the practice, however, is incorrect, unmercantile, and dangerous. The holder's name should always vouch for what he receives, though the record be inade in his own hand.
4. RECEIPT FOR INTEREST ON A BOND, $50.00. Received, Utica, July 4, 1836, of A B, fifty doliars in full , for one year's interest, due the 1st
inst. on his bond, upon which the same is endorsed.
P P. Ff2