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Thursday, 26 November 1914

Senator KEATING (Tasmania) . - Another amendment, of which I gave notice, is also as to time, and it is to substitute "sixty" for "thirty" in paragraph i. I move - -

That the word " thirty," in paragraph t, be left out, with the view to insert in lieu thereof the word " sixty."

The object of my amendment is to make sixty days the maximum time within which a creditor may give his assent to the deed which has been executed by the debtor who has taken advantage of this part of the Act in regard to composition or assignment. Australia is a very large country, and, therefore, it may take a little time for necessary information to get through to a creditor. He may not have been present personally or by proxy at the meeting, and it may require a little correspondence on his part to satisfy himself that he is doing the right thing; or he may wish to get into communication with other creditors, who, he thinks, have a common interest with him; and this may, in itself, take a little time. Of course, if he only had to say " Yes " or " No," without having any inquiries made, or conferring as far as he possibly could by correspondence with other creditors, thirty days might be enough. The longer term would give a creditor some opportunity to make an inquiry of the trustee, or of some other person associated with the composition or assignment, or of some of the creditors. He might want to find out what they are doing. As the period for creditors outside the Commonwealth is to be six months, I think that sixty days will not be too much to accord to creditors here. If the period is left at thirty days, the creditor might in certain circumstances be compelled to sign without having had the opportunity of finding out as fully as he would like all the circumstances, or ascertaining what other creditors far away from the debtor and far away from himself were doing in the matter.

Senator Gardiner - There is no objection to accepting the amendment.

Amendment agreed to.

Clause, as amended, agreed to.

Clause 150-

The form in the first part of the third schedule hereto may be used for any deed under this part of this A'ct, and when so used shall be of the same effect as if it were in the form of the deed in the second part of that schedule.

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