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Of Administration to the Effects of Intestate Seamen,
Marines, and Soldiers.
By stat. 11 Geo. IV. and 1 Wm. IV. c. 20, the statute 11 G. IV., C. 55 Geo. III. c. 60, is repealed. By section 56, the wages, prize money, &c., of a petty Mode of ob-.
taining admi. officer, or seaman, or non-commissioned officer of marines, or marine, dying intestate, are to be paid to his representatives, effects of intes
tate seamen, only upon administration obtained in the following manner; &c. videlicet, the person claiming administration shall send a letter to the inspector, stating his abode, his relationship to the deceased, the names of the deceased and of the ship or ships to which he belonged, that he has been informed of the death, and requesting such directions as may enable him to procure administration, or to the like effect; upon receipt whereof the inspector shall send by post, under cover to the minister of the parish wherein the claimant shall reside, a form of petition, together with the requisite certificates, in blank, to be filled up as hereafter mentioned, and a letter pointing out the steps to be taken thereon; and shall also send to the claimant a letter advising him of the forwarding of the said petition or paper as aforesaid, and pointing out the measures to be taken by him for substantiating his claim; and, upon receipt of the said petition, the minister or curate shall examine him, the claimant, and also such two inhabitant householders of the parish as may be disposed to certify their personal knowledge of him, and their belief of his right to administer to the effects of the intestate, according to the degree of relationship set forth at the head of the petition; and the minister or curate being satisfied of the truth of their answers, and having seen the claimant sign the application, and the two householders sign the certificate (which the minister is required to do), shall add thereto a description of
11 G. 1v. c. 20. the height, &c., of the claimant; and, after the blanks in the
petition, certificates, and description shall have been filled up, shall certify to the several particulars by subscribing his signature thereto, for which purposes the claimant and householders shall attend at such time and place as the minister or curate shall appoint; and the claimant shall pay to the minister or curate a fee of two shillings and sixpence; and, the paper being completed according to the directions given, the minister shall return the same by post to the treasurer of the navy, London; and, upon its receipt at the Navy Pay Office, the inspector shall examine it, and, being satisfied of the claim, he shall transmit to a proctor a certificate thereof; and, in case the claimant shall not reside within the bills of mortality, the inspector shall at the same time enclose and send to the proctor a letter addressed to the minister and churchwardens or elders (as the case may be) of the claimant's panel, signifying the transmission of a commission
a (which the proctor is to obtain) for swearing the claimant as administrator, with the necessary instructions for executing the same; and the proctor shall, upon receipt thereof, take the requisite steps towards enabling the claimant to obtain administration, and shall, in the inspector's letter to the minister, enclose the commission or other necessary instrument, with instructions for executing the same, and forward the same by post, agreeably to the address put thereon by
the inspector. Minister reject
Sect. 57 provides, that, in case the minister or curate inst petition, to shall reject any petition, he shall state his reasons for such state his
rejection on the petition, and forthwith return the same to the treasurer of the navy; and, in case no application shall be made by the claimant, or no effectual steps taken by him to complete the petition and the certificates, within two calendar months from the date of the inspector's letter, the minister or curate shall return the petition to the treasurer
of the navy, with his reason for doing so noted thereon. Manner of pro•
Sect. 63 enacts, that, when the executor or administrator ceeding in case shall die before he shall have received the wages, &c., payof executors,
able to his testator or intestate, the inspector may investigate 11 G. 1v. c. 20. the right of any person claiming payment of the same, or to &c., dying be
fore the receipt represent the person of such deceased petty officer, &c.; and, of wages. being satisfied of such right, shall certify the name and place of abode of such person upon the check or certificate, and that in his judgment the claimant is the rightful representative of such deceased petty officer, &c., and entitled to receive whatever may remain due in respect of his services as aforesaid; and thereupon, if the wages, &c., remaining unpaid shall appear to the inspector not to amount nor likely to amount to more than twenty pounds, the treasurer, or any prize agent, may pay to such person all wages, &c., so due or to become payable, without requiring fresh administration: but, if the same shall amount or appear to the said inspector to be likely to amount to more than that sum, then the same shall only be paid upon fresh letters of administration, to be obtained as before directed.
Sect. 64, for preventing frauds by pretended creditors of Administration deceased seamen and marines, enacts, that no letters of admi- granted to crenistration shall be granted to any creditor of any deceased ditors of petty officer or seaman, &c., but that every such creditor marines. shall receive the amount of his claim (if just) out of the assets, or so far as the same will extend for that purpose, when the just amount shall have been ascertained and approved in manner following the creditor shall deliver to the inspector an account in writing, signed, stating the particulars of the demand and the place of his abode, and verified by oath or affirmation before a justice of the peace; and, if any application for a certificate to obtain probate or administration shall be made, the inspector shall give notice to the applicant of the name and place of abode of the creditor, and the amount of the debt, and shall also cause notice to be given to the creditor of the place of abode of such applicant; but, if no such application shall have been made at the time of the delivery of the claim, the inspector shall proceed to investigate the account of such creditor, for which purpose he may require production of all books,
not to be
11 G. IV. c. 20. accounts, &c., relating to his demand, and satisfactory evi
dence thereof; and, if such creditor shall satisfy the inspector of the justice of the demand in part or in the whole, the same shall be allowed; but, if all books, &c., shall not be produced, or a sufficient reason assigned for not producing the same, or if the inspector shall not be satisfied of the justice of the demand, he shall disallow the same: and if such creditor shall be dissatisfied, he shall be at liberty to appeal against such decision to the said treasurer, who shall thereupon inquire into the same by the examination of the parties and their witnesses upon oath, &c., and allow or disallow the claim, in part or in the whole, as to him shall seem fit; the decision of the treasurer to be final and conclusive; no claim to be admitted or allowed, unless made within two years after the death of the party, nor unless the same shall appear to have accrued within three years next before the
death. Creditor to be Sect. 65 enacts that if, within twelve calendar months paid if no execators or admi- from the delivery of the claim, no application shall have been nistrators.
made by any person in the character of executor or administrator, the creditor shall be entitled to receive so much as shall have been allowed to be due to him out of the monies payable in respect of the services of the deceased, so far as they will extend to satisfy the same; and thereupon the inspector shall grant to the creditor a certificate of the allowance of such claim; and so much of such wages as shall be sufficient to satisfy the claim so allowed shall be paid or remitted to the creditor: Provided that, if any prize money, &c., shall be due to the deceased, the same shall be payable to such creditor only as follows:-if the wages, &c., shall not be sufficient to discharge the claim, the proper officer in the Navy Pay Office shall state at the foot of the certificate the amount paid to the creditor, and it shall not be lawful for the creditor to demand or receive from any person any prize money, &c., due to the deceased, except as hereinafter next mentioned ; (that is to say,) such prize money, if in the hands of an agent, shall be paid over as in cases of unclaimed prize money, and the creditor, on the production of such 11 G. IV. c. 20. certificate to the officer appointed to pay the prize money, shall be entitled to receive from him so much thereof as shall be sufficient to discharge his demand, and, upon the same being satisfied, the inspector shall retain the certificate as a voucher or document of office: Provided also, that, if there shall be more creditors than one, they shall be satisfied according to the priority of the allowance of their respective claims, but so as not to deprive any creditor of any priority he may by law be entitled to by reason of any specialty, provided notice in writing of the particulars of such specialty shall have been given to the treasurer of the navy in due time.
The remaining provisions of the statutes 11 Geo. IV. & 1 Wm. IV. c. 20, together with those of the stat. 2 & 3 Wm. IV. c. 40, and the stat. 4 & 5 Wm. IV. c. 25, respecting the administration of the effects of Intestate Seamen and Marines, will be found in the previous chapter, relating to the probate of the Wills of such persons (e).
By stat. 58 Geo. III. c. 73, ss. 1 & 2, all sums due in 58 G. 111. c. 73. respect of any military clothing, &c., or which shall be due Settlement of to any agent, paymaster, or quartermaster, or any other debts, officer upon any such account, or on account of any advances made for any such purpose, shall be deemed regimental debts, and paid out of any arrears of pay, or out of the effects, or any prize or bounty money, of any officer or soldier dying while in the service, in such proportion or priority as shall be ordered by the secretary at war for the time being, and in preference to any other debts, claims, or demands upon the effects of such officer or soldier; and, if any doubt arise whether any claim or demand made be a regimental debt, such question shall be decided by the order or certificate of the secretary at war, who is authorized to cause all surplus which may remain after satisfying such regimental debts to be paid to the persons entitled thereto.
Sect. 3. All such regimental debts shall be paid without
(e Ante p. 346, et seq.