§ Order for Second Reading read.
§ MR. STUART-WORTLEY
, in moving that the Bill be now read a second time, said, it merely proposed the extension of a principle with which the Legislature was already familiar. Under the Friendly Societies and other similar Acts, a member of a Society could make a valid testamentary disposition of funds standing to his credit in the books of the Society, by sending to the proper officers of the Society a written notice, nominating some person or persons to whom he wished the money to be paid at his death. But this could only be done in respect of funds not exceeding £50. Since the passing of those Acts, all estates below £100 in value had been exempted from Probate Duty. There seemed, therefore, to be no very good reason why that power of nomination should any longer stop at £50, and the Bill, accordingly, proposed to raise that 1666 limit to that of the sum exempted from Probate Duty—namely, £100. By one of the clauses of the Bill, the intestacy provisions of the Friendly and Industrial Societies and Savings Banks Acts were to be applied to trade unions. The remaining clauses, of the Bill were intended to prevent frauds on the Revenue by persons possessed of other funds, besides their £100 standing in the Society's books. That being the outline of the Bill, he trusted the Motion for the second reading would be agreed to.
§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Bill be now read a second time."—(Mr. Stuart- Worthy.)
§ MR. COURTNEY
said, he had no objection to the principle of the Bill, and would, therefore, not oppose the second reading. But as the Bill had only been circulated on Monday, morning, and as he wished to examine its details more closely than he had as yet been able to do, he hoped the hon. Member for Sheffield would not set it down for Committee until after the Whitsuntide Recess.
§ MR. STUART-WORTLEY
said, he would gladly accept the suggestion of the hon. Gentleman the Secretary to the Treasury.
§ Question put, and agreed to.
§ Bill read a second time, and committed for Monday 28th May.