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British

broker, principal, authority, agent, sell, credit and contract

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BRITISH is the name given to a book pub lished under statutory authority by the General Medical Council. It contains a list of medicines and compounds, and the manner of preparing them, together with the weights and measures by which they are to be prepared and mixed. All medicines and compounds contained therein are to be prepared and mixed only in accordance with the authorised formularies; to do otherwise, except in the case of a medicine manufactured under letters patent, is to incur heavy poislties. A legally qualified medical practitioner who has passed an exami nation in pharmacy in order to qualify for his diploma, and also a veterinary surgeon in respect of medicines to be used by him in his practice, may prepare and mix any medicine of the B.Y. without reference to its formularies.

BROKER—Generally.—Though brokers are often mentioned in the statute law, and many regulations have been enacted respecting them, the law does not seem to have defined what the precise character of a broker is. From the general current of judicial decisions, as well as from now well recognised mercantile usages, a broker may be shortly defined as one employed merely in the negotiation of commercial contracts. He is not entrusted with the posses thon of goods, and does not act in his own name. His business has always consisted in negotiating exchanges, or in buying and selling stocks and goods ; but for at least a century the term has included persons who act as agents to buy, sell, and charter ships, and effect policies of insurance. Strictly speaking, the negotiations of a broker are private ; not like those of an auctioneer, who is not a broker, and whose negotiations are public. The man who buys and sells second-hand furniture on his own account, though popularly so called, is not in fact a broker. A broker is a " mercantile agent" within the meaning of the Factors Act, but not being entrusted as a broker with possession, derives no authority from that Act to sell or pledge his principal's goods. Generally speaking, the authority of a broker to bind his principal rests upon the same basis and is governed by the same rules as the authority of au agent, but when dealing with a broker, it should be remembered that there may be sonic custom or usage in his special trade extending or limiting the more generally implied authority of an ordinary agent. As instances of such special cases, London

stockbrokers, Liverpool insurance brokers, and Irish provision brokers may be mentioned. But the principal would not be affected by an unreasonable custom, or by one which would v. ithout his knowledge change the intrinsic character of the contemplated contract.

A broker may sign a contract on behalf of his principal, but his clerk cannot. He may sell on credit where it is customary to do so ; but not otherwise, as in the case of stocks and shares which are not sold on credit. Although his principal may be known to the other parties, yet an insurance broker may receive payments on his behalf; no other class of broker can do this, so as to give a sufficient receipt to the party paying, unless, of course, he has a special authority from his principal to receive the money. He has no authority to contract in his own name, nor to cancel or alter a contract' ithout the consent of his principal, nor can he sell his own goods to his principal without the latter's knowledge. Like an agent, a broker must obey his principal's instruc tions, do things necessary and customary in relation to the matter in hand, and in his turn he is entitled to indemnity and remuneration from his principal. When acting for a foreign principal, a broker cannot pledge his principal's credit, and all persons who deal with a broker under such circumstances must be content to give credit to him alone.

A broker cannot recover any commission or remuneration in respect of illegal contracts. Thus, if a broker of the class that usually designates itself "matrimonial agents" negotiates a marriage, he cannot recover any fee or reward whatsoever for his trouble in the matter ; and this notwith standing that the party from whom payment is claimed has given him a duly signed commission note. In if either party has paid the corn-, mission, or any part of it, the marriage-broker may be sued for its recovery. The same thing applies to gaming contracts. See also AGENT ; PAWN BROKER; STOCKBROKER.

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