Thomas Jefferson Papers

107. A Bill for the Speedy Determination of Suits Wherein Foreigners Are Parties, 18 June 1779

107. A Bill for the Speedy Determination of Suits Wherein Foreigners Are Parties

Be it enacted by the General Assembly, that a suit, commenced in the High Court of Chancery, or General Court, by or against a party, who is no citizen of the commonwealth, shall be heard or tried in the term to which the process shall be returned, regularly executed, or so soon afterwards as may be; and, to this end, subsequent process to compel appearance may be returnable to any day of a term, and rules to bring the matter in dispute to speedy issue may be given to expire at any shorter time than what is prescribed in ordinary cases. If such suit be commenced in the court of a county, city, or borough, it may without any other reason, on the motion or petition of either party, be removed by writ of certiorari; and the hearing or trial thereof shall be accelerated by like means as if it had originated in the court to which it shall be removed. And the Court of Appeals, High Court of Chancery, or General Court, shall determine every such suit brought before them by writ of error or appeal, with all the expedition which the necessary forms of their proceedings will allow.

Report description begins Report of the Committee of Revisors Appointed by the General Assembly of Virginia in MDCCLXXVI, Richmond, 1784 description ends , p. 79. MS (ViU); clerk’s copy.

Bill presented by Madison 31 Oct. 1785, postponed 14 Dec. to next session, brought up again at the Oct. 1786 session, and referred to committee of the whole; apparently no further action was taken on it (JHD description begins Journal of the House of Delegates of the Commonwealth of Virginia (cited by session and date of publication) description ends , Oct. 1785, 1828 edn., p. 12–15, 92; same, Oct. 1786, p. 16–17).

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