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Wednesday, 11 November 1914

Senator KEATING (Tasmania) . - I think that the Committee is indebted to Senator Bakhap for having directed attention to this clause. Instead of the marginal note reading " Duties of sheriff as to proceeds of sale," it should read, " Invitation to bankruptcy." After a man has been sued, and judgment has been given against him, if execution has issued*, and the sheriff has received the proceeds of any sale of the debtor's goods, that officer is entitled, under this clause, to deduct his expenses and to retain the balance for fourteen days. Why? Why was the man sued? Because he owed the plaintiff a certain sum of money. Why, then, should that money be retained by the sheriff for fourteen days? I repeat that the clause is an invitation to other creditors to bankrupt a debtor. A demand might be made upon a man for the payment of £25, and he might deny his indebtedness. The circumstances might be such as to decide him not to go into Court. Judgment would accordingly go against him by default, and the plaintiff might issue execution. Then, after the debtor had paid over the amount of the judgment with costs, the sheriff would be able to retain the money for fourteen days.

Senator Findley - Take another view. Suppose that one claimant desired to get in first, to the detriment of other creditors.

Senator KEATING - The other creditors are entitled to consideration, but they should look after themselves. What is to prevent a judgment creditor from garnisheeing a judgment?

Senator Findley - He would get his money by taking that course.

Senator KEATING - Then what would become of the other creditors? The clause is purely an invitation to bankrupt a man against whom a judgment has been given. We should hesitate seriously before we assent to any such provision.

Senator Bakhap - It is absolutely in conflict with clause 86.

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