United States Statutes at Large/Volume 4/21st Congress/2nd Session/Chapter 62
Certain insolvents to apply for discharge.Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That any person who was an insolvent debtor on or before the first day of January last, and who is indebted to the United States for any sum of money then due, which he is unable to pay, unless such person be indebted as the principal in an official bond, or for public money received by him, and not paid over or accounted for according to law, or for any fine, forfeiture, or penalty, incurred by the violation of any law of the United States, may make application in writing, under oath or affirmation, to the Secretary of the Treasury, for the purpose of obtaining a release or discharge of the said debt; and, also, all the estate, real and personal, which the said applicant owned at the time of his insolvency, and the manner in which such estate has been disposed of; and what estate, if any, he has since owned, and still owns.
Proceedings thereon.Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That the Secretary of the Treasury is hereby directed to transmit to the district attorney of the United States for the district or territory within which the said applicant shall reside, a certificate copy of the said application, with such instructions as he may think proper; and it shall be the duty of the said district attorney to lay the said copy of such application before the commissioner or commissioners of insolvency to be appointed by virtue of this act, and to appear and act before them as counsel in behalf of the United States.
Commissioners to be appointed.Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That the Secretary of the Treasury is hereby authorized and directed to appoint any number of commissioners of insolvency he may think proper, not exceeding three in each judicial district or territory of the United States, who, before they enter upon the duties of their appointment, shall severally take an oath or affirmation before one of the justices of the Supreme Court, or before any judge of a district court of the United States, that they will faithfully execute the trust committed to them: and it shall be the duty of the said commissioner or commissioners to proceed publicly to examine the books, papers, and vouchers of each of the said applicants; and they, or either of them, shall also be authorized to examine each of the said applicants, or any other person or persons, upon oath or affirmation, touching the said application:Duties. and it shall be the duty of the said commissioner or commissioners to make a report, in writing, to the said Secretary, of the result of their examination in each case, therein particularly stating, as near as may be, the time when the applicant became insolvent, how soon thereafter he made known his insolvency to his creditors, the cause or causes, and the amount of such insolvency; and, also, all the estate, real and personal, which the said applicant owned at the time of his insolvency, and the manner in which such estate has been disposed of; and what estate, if any, he has since owned, and still owns.
Proceedings on report of commissioners.Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That the Secretary of the Treasury, after he shall have received the report of the said commissioner or commissioners, shall proceed to examine the circumstances of each case; and if it shall have been proved to his satisfaction that the said debtor is unable to pay the said debt or debts which he owes to the United States; that he hath done no act fraudulently to deprive the United States of their legal priority; that he has not been guilty of any fraud, nor made any conveyance of his estate, real or personal, in trust for himself, or with an intent to defraud the United States, or whereby to expect any benefit or advantage to himself or family; then and in that case, the said Secretary may compromise with the said debtor, upon such terms and conditions as he may think reasonable and proper under all the circumstances of the case, and may execute a release to him or her for the amount of the said debt or debts which he or she may owe to the United States; which said release shall contain a recital that the foregoing particulars have been satisfactorily proved to the said Secretary;Proviso. Provided, however, That the said release shall be rendered null and void, if it shall at any time be ascertained that the said insolvent debtor hath obtained the same upon false suggestions.
False oath made perjury.Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That if the said insolvent debtor, or any other person, shall falsely take an oath or affirmation under this act, he or she shall be deemed guilty of perjury, and shall suffer the pains and penalties in that case provided.
Compensation of commissioners.Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, That each of the said commissioners of insolvency shall receive five dollars per day for each day they shall be actually employed in the performance of their duty under this act; which sum, together with the actual expense incurred for office rent and all other contingencies, provided the same shall not, in the whole, exceed two dollars per day, shall be apportioned among the several applicants by the said commissioner or commissioners, under the direction of the Secretary of the Treasury, according to the time occupied in the investigation of each case; and each of the said applicants, immediately after the investigation of his or her case shall be completed, by the commissioner or commissioners, and before the report shall be transmitted to the said Secretary, shall pay his or her respective proportions of the same: and it shall be the duty of the said commissioner or commissioners to transmit, with his or their report, in each case, a statement, under oath or affirmation, to the said Secretary, of the time actually occupied in the investigation thereof, and the amount which they shall have received from the said applicant.
Compensation of district attorneys.Sec. 7. And be it further enacted, That the compensation to be paid to the district attorney of each district and territory shall be five dollars for each day he shall be actually employed under the provisions of this act.
Annual report of Secretary of the Treasury.Sec. 8. And be it further enacted, That it shall be the duty of the Secretary of the Treasury to report annually to Congress the names of the applicants under this act, and the nature and amount of the debt or debts due from each to the United States; and, also, the names of those who shall have obtained releases, together with the terms of compromise in each case.
5,000 dollars appropriated.Sec. 9. And be it further enacted, That the sum of five thousand dollars be, and the same is hereby, appropriated, to be paid out of any money not otherwise appropriated, for the purpose of carrying into effect the provisions of this act.
Act limited.Sec. 10. And be it further enacted, That this act shall continue in force for three years and no longer.
Approved, March 2, 1831.
- An act in addition to an act, entitled “An act for the relief of certain insolvent debtors of the United States,” July 14, 1832, ch. 230.An act to revive and amend “An act for the relief of certain insolvent debtors of the United States,” passed on the 2d day of March, 1831, and an act in addition thereto, passed on the 14th of July, 1832. June 7, 1834, ch. 45.An act to extend for a longer period the several acts now in force for the relief of certain insovlent debtors of the United States, March 2, 1837, ch. 23.An act to extend for a longer period the several acts now in force for the relief of insolvent debtors of the United States, May 27, 1840, ch. 26.An act to re-enact and continue in operation the several acts now in force for the relief of insolvent debtors of the United States, January 28, 1843, ch. 20.