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Assignment of Debts

debt, debtor, notice and assignor

DEBTS, ASSIGNMENT OF. A customer may assign to a hanker any money which is clue, or will be due, to 1nm. This may be effected by a letter signed by the customer, addressed to the person who owes him money, requesting that the debt be paid to the banker. The letter will be retained by the banker, who should give written notice at once to the debtor of the assign ment, and ascertain from him if the debt is as stated, and if it is free from any prior charge. It is desirable to obtain an acknow ledgment from the debtor. The banker should be able to prove that he sent the notice in ease the debtor does not acknow ledge it.

Such an instrument, being an absolute assignment of a debt, is considered (Alpe's Stamp Duties) to be liable to stamp duty " of ten shillings as a ' conveyance not hereinbefore charged,' or ad ;Ľalorein convey ance duty if on sale or in consideration pro tanto of any debt under Section 57." (See that section under CON VE VINCI .) By Section 25, sub-section 6, of the Supreme Court of Judicature Act, 1S73, it is enacted as follows : " Any absolute assignment, by writing under the hand of the assignor not purport ing to be by way of charge only), of any debt or other legal chose in action, of which express notice in writing shall have been given to the debtor, trustee, or other person from whom the assignor would have been entitled to receive or claim such debt or chose in action, shall be, and be deemed to have been, effectual in law (subject to all equities which would have been entitled to priority over the right of the assignee if this Act had not passed), to pass and transfer the legal right to such debt or chose in action from the date of such notice, and all legal and other remedies for the same, and the power to give a good discharge for the same, with out the concurrence of the assignor : Provided always, that if the debtor, trustee, or other person liable in respect of such debt or chose in action shall have had notice that such assignment is disputed by the assignor or anyone claiming under him, or of any other opposing or conflicting claims to such debt or chose in action, he shall be entitled, if he think fit, to call upon the several persons making claim thereto to interplead concern ing the same, or he may, if he think fit, pay the same into the High Court of Justice under and in conformity with the provisions of the Acts for the relief of trustees."

If the debtor has a counter claim against the assignor, the assignee will be entitled only to the balance of the debt after allowing for the counter claim.

A cheque is not an assignment of money in favour of the payee, as the banker is liable only to the drawer : but if a customer formally assigns his balance to a third part y and the banker receives notice thereof his liability is then to the assignee.