JOINTLY AND SEVERALLY. Where a promissory note is drawn by several makers " we jointly and severally promise to pay," each maker is liable for the full amount of the note ; but if the note is worded " we promise " or " we jointly promise " the makers are liable as a whole and not indi vidually for the full amount. Where a note " I promise to pay " is signed by several persons it is by Section S5, s.s.2, of the Bills of Exchange Act, 1882, deemed to be their joint and several promise.
It is obviously to the advantage of a banker that all parties liable to him jointly should be liable severally as well ; he can then, if necessary, sue all together for the whole amount of the debt, or sue each party separately for the whole amount. If one is sued and the banker fails to obtain payment in full, the remaining parties may then be sued. If one of the makers of a joint and several note dies, his estate is liable, but if the note is joint only, the estate of a deceased maker is not liable.
Where a joint account is overdrawn the liability is joint only, and if one of the parties dies the survivor becomes liable for the full amount ; the estate of the deceased is not responsible for the debt. Where a
joint advance has been made and one of the parties becomes bankrupt, the solvent party is liable for the whole amount. In cases of joint overdrawn accounts, it is customary, when the account is not otherwise secured, to obtain a guarantee signed by all the parties ; when this is done a claim can be made upon the deceased's or bankrupt's estate. CSee JOINT ACCOUNT.) A payment, or acknowledgment, by one does not prevent the other parties who have signed a promissory note from pleading the Statute of Limitations, whether they have signed " jointly " or " jointly and severally." (See STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS.) An ordinary cheque, signed by more than one individual, is not a joint and several document. (See PROMISSORY NoTE.)