HL Deb 21 May 1858 vol 150 cc1021-2

said, he wished to call the attention of his noble and learned Friend opposite (Lord Cranworth) to a defect which existed in a very important measure which had been passed in the last Session of Parliament with respect to settled estates. It was provided that in the case of a woman separated from her husband, her examination with the view to ascertain whether her assent to the disposal of her property was unbiassed, should be entered into before a solicitor of the Court of Chancery. Now, in those instances in which a lady resided in England nothing could be more easy than the compliance with that provision; but if she resided abroad or in the Colonies there would be great difficulty in acting in accordance with the law. As a proof that such was the state of things, he might mention the case which had come within his own knowledge of a lady who resided in Quebec, and who wished to part with certain property, but who was unable, after considerable research, to find a solicitor through whose means to carry her purpose into execution nearer than Toronto. Indeed, the difficulty which had been found in that instance in finding a solicitor reminded him of the line which their Lordships must have seen quoted in the old Latin Grammar:— Rara avis in terris nigroque simillima cygno. A solicitor, in fact, was very often not to be found within a distance of 600 miles in such cases, and in order to remedy the in- convenience which in consequence arose, he should suggest to his noble and learned Friend the expediency of introducing a short Bill removing the defects of the measure of last Session.


was much obliged to his noble and learned Friend for mentioning this subject. It had been already called to his attention, and he hoped to lay a Bill upon the table for curing the defect in the measure after the recess.

On Motion, that the House do adjourn to Monday, the 31st instant,

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