The continuance OF THE HIGH COVRT OF CHANCERY vindicated, to be absolute neces­sary, (the abuses and corruptions being removed,) and the removal there­of, and the perfect Reformation of the proceedings in that Court, Propo­sed in several Bils weekly, or more often, intended to be Pub­lished.

By many Citizens, and others of the Common-wealth, well knowing of such abuses.

LONDON: Printed for Lawrence Chapman in the Strand, neer the Savoy. 1654.

Bill: I. For remedy against untrue, and unjust Re­ports by Masters of the Chancery, and other Referrees.

WHereas Masters of the Chancery, and other Referrees of late years have been much complained of for taking Rewards, and thereby many times car­rying businesses the wrong wayes, and for extra­ordinary and unwarranted Fees, or so called, taken by them, which hath occasioned much trouble, perplexity, charge, and de­laies in divers Suits for many years.

For remedy whereof it is proposed to be desired, that it may

BE Enacted, that if any Master, or Referree shall make any Re­port, or Certificate contrary to the Books, Writings, or Notes shewed him, which by his Order he shall have power to view, or peruse, or Copies of Bils, Answers, or Depositions, or o­ther things taken, in, or concerning the cause to him referred; Or that if such Master or Referree shall not report so much for the benefit of the party, upon whose Motion any matter shall be referred to him; Or for the other Party, Plaintiff, or Defendant in his Order of Reference, as the Counsel learned in the Law, Attorney, or Solicitor of either party shall shew, & make appear unto him, the Matter so to be reported, to be necessary to be re­ported or certified, then every such Master or Referree shall for­feit and pay unto the party grieved, or to be grieved thereby 100 l: and double dammages, with costs of Sute to be recovered by Action of Debt, &c.

Provided, that (before the commensing of any such Action, or &c.) the party or parties finding him, her, or them self, or selves grieved by such Report or Certificate, shall (within one moneth next after the fileing, or delivering the same into the Court where such Order of Referrence shall be made; Or the Office of such Court proper for receiving of such Reports or Certificates) give notice unto such Master or Referree, or Referrees, and re­quire him or them to alter, amend, or procure to be altered, or amended such Report or Certificate. And that if such Master, or Referre, or Referrees do or shal alter or amend; or cause to be altered or amended such Report or Certificate; or notifie or declare unto the party, or parties, by, or for whom such notice or Declaration be, or shall be so given unto such Master, or Referree, that he will move the Court (where such Order was made, or entred,) & deliver, or cause to be delivered to him, her, or them a Copy in writing of such Notification or Declaration, and the matter of such thing to be moved within dayes then next following,) and receive and take such matter in writing as such party so supposing to be grieved, do or shall (within dayes next from thence) alledg to impeach, damn, or overthrow such Report or Certificate, and cause both the same matter so to be alledged on both fides to be delivered into the Court, to which such Report, or Certificate shall be, or to be made [wher­in there be, or shall be two or more Judges, or Justices of the one Bench, or the other sitting, and there have equall power with such others, who do or shall fit there to give their Votes] to be read, then if such Report or Certificate be, or shall be by such Court, (so supplied, or assisted, or so to be) approved of, &c. the same to stand firm and stable, and not to be reversed or dissolved (but by the Supream Power) and such Master, or Referree, or Referrees not to be questioned for doing the same, but justified therein, and have their reasonable costs to be sustained in that behalf of the party, or parties unjustly vexing them, upon such occasion.

Bill II. For avoiding of many unnecessary Hearings in Chancery, and mitti­gation of the Charges in divers others: And speedy tryall, and finding out the truth of every Deposition, of which any doubt shall arise.

VVHereas in and after divers Hearings in the High Court of Chancery, and other Courts called English Courts, or Courts of Equity upon Debate of Counsel learned on both sides, there hath hapned in divers Causes in these Courts such doubt of the truth, in many of those Causes; that such Courts have been so cautious and tender in, and concerning the same, that those Courta have not thought meet or convenient to make any final Order or Decree in such Courts in such causes; but have Ordered an Action to be con [...]lved and drawn, and a Plea thereunto to be pleaded, and an Issue to be taken thereupon of the matter of the doubt of such truth, and then accordingly the Jury, or Jurors have found and given a Verdict thereupon; And then such Courts have made final Orders or Decrees for the same, which course hath been accounted, applauded, and com­mended to be very good and beneficial for the Publique, & few or none have found fault, or themselves grieved therewith: but only have complained of the excessive charge there.

For establishing of the Benefits before mentioned, and avoid­ing of the excess aforesaid.

It is proposed to be destred that it may

1 BE Enacted that if either Complainant, or Complainants D [...]fendant, or Defendante, his or their Commissioners do, or shall misdoubt the truth of any matter, thing, or things being matt [...]r of Fact or D [...]ed done to be tryed by J [...]rors, and not by Record) deposed by any such Witness or Witnesses, and refuse to agree the same for Truth, then an Action or Actions of, or up­on the Case, Trespas [...], or Debt, may or shall be drawn, wherein such ma [...]ter, thing or things may, or shall be alledged to be true by such either Complainant, or Complainants, Defendant, or Defendants; (who do or will endeavour to maintain the same to be true.) And that the other of such Complainant, or Complainants, Defendant or Defendants, (who do or wil endea­vour to maintain the same matter, thing, or things not to be true) shall answer, or plead in barr thereof, that such matter, [Page 4] thing, or things is not, or was, or are not, or were not true accor­ding as the same is, or was, are, or were alledged: And that Issue or Issues may, or shall be thereupon joyned, and one such Action shall be for such matter, thing, or things which is, or was, are, or were, or shall be done, or acted in the same County (where such matter, thing or things is, or was, are, or were, or shall be acted or done) whether or not such matter, thing, or things is, or was, are, or were, as shall be l [...] ­cal or transitory; unless such Complainant, or Complainants, Defendant, or Defendants shall alledg, and make it appear by Oath that the other, or others of them be, or shall be powerful in such County, by being feated in having over-much command­ing power of him, or them there; or by over-much affection by them gained, in lending money, or such like favours, or power gained by him, or them there, that then such Action, or Actions shall be laid in the County next, or neerest to the place where such matter, thing or things shall be so acted, or done.

2. And that such Action or Actions shall be brought within dayes next after publication in the Cause or Suit to be so in question, or proceeding or Debate by either such Complai­nant, or Complainants, Defendant, or Defendants, and within that time fairly written (as is mentioned in another Bill con­cerning many other matters,) and sent into one of such of the Superior Courts at Westminster; which usually, or most common­ly have holden Plea, and had conusans of such Action, and Issue; or power of trying, or sending the same to be tryed at any Assi­zes, or places, of, or for tryal, wheresoever such superior Courts be, or shall be nereafter holden or kept: And that the other of him, her, or them shall so plead, or answer to the same (within one week, or dayes next after a Copy, or copies of such Declaration, or Declarations shall be delivered to him, her, or them, his, her, or their Clerk, Attorney or Agent authorized, or to be authorized to receive the same: Or left for him, her or them in the Court, or Office aforesaid and deliver unto such Complainant, or Complainants, Defendant, or Defendants his, her, or their Clerk, Attorney, or [...] in that behalf a Copy, or Copies of such Plea, or Pleas, Answer, or Answers, with the Issue, or Issues thereupon joyned, or to be joyned as before is men­tioned; or leave the same for him or them in the Court or Of­fice [Page 5] (where such Declaration is, or shall be so delivered to be [...] ­led, or kept) within convenient time next after such delivery of the copy of such Declaration, or Declarations, or notice given to such Complainant, or Complainants, Defendant, or Defendants, (who so should plead or answer) or otherwise next after notice thereof in writing left, at his, her, or their usual dwelling house, or houses, or place, or places of abode, at the time of such delive­ry of such Declaration, or Declarations so to be filed and kept into such Court, or Office (that is to say) by the space of dayes for every 20 miles distance off, or from the place where such Declaration, or Declarations be, or shall be delivered, or such notice given from the Court, or Office (into which such De­claration, or Declarations be, or shall be so delivered, & notice be given to the Clerk, or Attorney of such complainant or Com­plainants, Defendant or Defendants of such Note or writing left, or to be left at such House, or place of abode within the said time: And that such Complainant, or Complainants, De­fendant, or Defendants (who shall so plead or answer) shal with­in such time so limited, or to be limited to him, her, or them to do the same) leliver into such Court, or Office, such plea, or pleas, Answer, or Answers with such Issue, or Issues thereupon joyned, or to be joyned as aforesaid, fairly written in manner and form before-mentioned.

3. And that such Complainant or Complainants, Defendant or Defendants (who shal bring, or cause to be brought such Acti­on, or so declare) shall at the then next Assiz [...]s, or place or places for tryals of Issues upon Actions to be holden within dayes next after a copy of such plea, or pleas, and Issues so delivered, or to be delivered as aforesaid; or the same plea, or pleas, and Issues so delivered, or to be delivered (in manner and form aforesaid to be fi [...]ed & kept) cause or procure such Issue or Issues to be try­ed; & that every such Declaration, Answer, plea, & Issue, & pro­ceedings between such Declaration and Issue so written, & deli­vered in as aforesaid (for the ease of the charges and trouble, and more ready and speedy dispatch thereof) may and shall be taken off, and from the file in such Court, and delivered out, and sent to the Justice, or Justices of the Assizes, or other Justice or Justices (who shall be authorized or impowred to try [Page 6] such Issues) to such place or places of Assize, with an expression or making mention in a peece of Parchment by it self so writ­ten, to be affixed to the same D [...]claration, and Plea, or answer, and issue of the Term, and year, when and of what such declara­tion is was, or shal be filed: or so delivered in to be kept, & when such Plea or answer with such Issue joyned i [...], was, or shal be put in, or delivered into such Court, or Office, and to what time, place, or places the Jury, Jurors, or Jurats to try such Issue, or Is­sues is, are, or shall be respiced, stayed, adjourned, or delayed to the effect in substance as hath been usually done, or written at the beginning and ending of Records usually taken, and issued Out of such Courts to be at Assizes, or before Justices there (chan­ging things necessary to be changed.) And that if any of such Declarations, Issues, and proceedings shall happen to be lost, then each, or any such Complainant, or Complainants, Plaintiff, or Plaintiffs, Defendant, or Defendants, his, her, or their Counsel, Clerk, or Attorney, may have a copy or copies of the same, or a­ny part thereof, written again as they were at the first, and put or delivered into the same Court, & shal be satisfied for so doing by him, or them, by whom the same were, or shal be so lost.

4. And that all and every of such notice, & notices so to be given, be, and shall be invalid unless the same shall be made ap­pear to be done as aforesaid by Oath of such credible person as is mentioned in the Bill herein before recited.

5. And that if either of such Complainant or Complainants, De­fendant, or Defendants (who do or shal endeavour to maintain such matter, thing or things for truth, or to be true) do or shall sail, or make default in any thing by or for him, her, or them, his her, or their Coun: Clerk, Attorney, Solicitor, or Agent, such mat­ter, thing, & things shal be granted, deemed, judged, & admitted not to be true to all intents and purposes, but taken for untruth.

6. And that if the other of such Complainant, or Complai­nants, Defendant, or Defendants (who do, or shall endeavour to maintain any such matter, thing, or things for truth, or not to be true) do, or shall make default in any thing, by, or for him, her, or them, his, he [...], or their Counsel, Clerk, Attorney, Solicitor, or A­gent, then such matter, thing, or things shall be construed, deemed, taken, and adjudged for untruth, and not to be true.

Other Bils are intended in convenient time to be published.

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