Policies of Assurance Act, 1867



An Act to enable Assignees of Policies of Life Assurance to sue thereon in their own Names.[1] [20th August 1867.]


Assignees of life policies, empowered to sue.

1. Any person or corporation now being or hereafter becoming entitled, by assignment or other derivative title, to a policy of life assurance, and possessing at the time of action brought the right in equity to receive and the right to give an effectual discharge to the assurance company liable under such policy for monies thereby assured or secured, shall be at liberty to sue at law in the name of such person or corporation to recover such monies.

Defence or reply on equitable grounds.

2. In any action on a policy of life assurance, a defence on equitable grounds, or a reply to such defence on similar grounds, may be respectively pleaded and relied upon in the same manner and to the same extent as in any other personal action.

Notice of assignment.

3. No assignment made after the passing of this Act of a policy of life assurance shall confer on the assignee therein named, his executors, administrators, or assigns, any right to sue for the amount of such policy, or the monies assured or secured thereby, until a written notice of the date and purport of such assignment shall have been given to the assurance company liable under such policy at their principal place of business for the time being, or in case they have two or more principal places of business then at some one of such principal places of business, either in England or Scotland or Ireland; and the date on which such notice shall be received shall regulate the priority of all claims under any assignment; and a payment bonâ fide made in respect of any policy by any assurance company before the date on which such notice shall have been received shall be as valid against the assignee giving such notice as if this Act had not been passed.

Principal place of business to be specified on policies.

4. Every assurance company shall, on every policy issued by them after the thirtieth day of September one thousand eight hundred and sixty-seven, specify their principal place or principal places of business at which notices of assignment may be given in pursuance of this Act.

Mode of assignment.

5. Any such assignment may be made either by endorsement on the policy or by a separate instrument in the words or to the effect set forth in the schedule hereto, such endorsement or separate instrument being duly stamped.

Receipt of notice of assignment.

6. Every assurance company to whom notice shall have been duly given of the assignment of any policy under which they are liable shall, upon the request in writing of any person by whom any such notice was given or signed, or of his executors or administrators, and upon payment in each case of a fee not exceeding five shillings, deliver an acknowledgment in writing, under the hand of the manager, secretary, treasurer, or other principal officer of the assurance company, of their receipt of such notice; and every such written acknowledgment, if signed by a person being de jure or de facto the manager, secretary, treasurer, or other principal officer of the assurance company whose acknowledgment the same purports to be, shall be conclusive evidence as against such assurance company of their having duly received the notice to which such acknowledgment relates.


7. In the construction and for the purposes of this Act the expression “policy of life assurance” or “policy” shall mean any instrument by which the payment of monies by or out of the funds of an assurance company, on the happening of any contingency depending on the duration of human life, is assured or secured; and the expression “assurance company” shall mean and include every corporation, association, society, or company now or hereafter carrying on the business of assuring lives, or survivorships, either alone or in conjunction with any other object or objects.

Saving of contracts under 16 & 17 Vict. c. 45. or 72 & 28 Vict. c. 43., and of engagements by friendly societies.

8. Provided always, that this Act shall not apply to any policy of assurance granted or to be granted or to any contract for a payment on death entered into or to be entered into in pursuance of the provisions of the Government Annuities Act, 1853, and the Government Annuities Act, 1864, or either of those Acts, or to any engagement for payment on death by any friendly society.

Short title.

9. For all purposes this Act may be cited as “The Policies of Assurance Act, 1867.”


Sect. 5 .

I A.B., of, &c., in consideration of, &c., do here by assign unto C.D., of, &c., his executors, administrators, and assigns, the [within] policy of assurance granted, &c. [here describe the policy]. In witness, &c.

[1 Short title, “The Policies of Assurance Act, 1867.” See s. 9.]