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ing is expired, with the clerk in his office upon the days herein before directed; and no rule shall be given between month and month, to the end that all persons by inspecting the rule book to be kept by the clerk for that purpose, may know what proceedings have been, or are to be, in the several causes there depending: that upon the expiration of any rule, judgment by default or a non-suit shall be signed by the clerk in his office, as of the proceeding court, which judg. ment shall be final in actions of debt, where the debt is certain; and in other actions a writ of enquiry shall be executed the next court after judgment so signed, the plaintiff or his attorney, giving the defendant, or his attorney, twenty days notice of the execution thereof: that no issue shall be tried the next succeeding court after it is joined, unless twenty days notice be given thereof, by the plaintiff or his attorney, to the defendant or bis attorney: If an issue be not tried, or a writ of inquiry not executed, the next court after it is joined, or juilgment by default, or interlocutory judgment entered, no notice of trial or executing such writ need to be given; but such causes shall be called and determined, in the same order as they stand on the docket: that when any final judgment shall be ob. tained out of court, the clerk shall allow a lawyer's fee in the bill of costs, if the plaintiff employed one; which see is hereby declared, in all cases, to be the same as in causes where judgment is obtained in court: that where a special verdict shall be found, or case agreed, time shall be allowed, upon the motion of either party, to the next succeeding court to argue it: And if any causes shall at the end of the court remain uncalled, they shall be continued of course, by the clerk on the docket, to the next succeeding court, without fee or reward: And no plea in abatement, or of non est factum, shall be received in any cause depending in either of the said courts, unless the party offering the same shall, by affidavit, prove the truth thercof: that where a plea in abatement shall be pleaded in any action, in either of the said courts depend. ing, and upon argument the same shall be adjudged insufficient, the plaintiff or plaintiffs, in such actions. shall recover against the defendant or defendants full costs, to the time of over-ruling such plea, including the costs of that court, a lawyer's fee only excepted; and that the plaintiff in replevin, or the defendant in
any other action, may plead as many several matters as he shall think necessary for his defence, so as they be not admitted to plead and demur to the whole. And for settling the method of, and expediting proceedings of the said courts in Chancery.
XIV. Be it further enacted, by the authority afore. And in said. That in all such suits the following rules and Chancery. methods shall be observed and put in practice, to wit, That the complainant shall file his bill the day after the court, to which the Subpoena is returnable, or (?on the first appearance of the defendant, that upon the complainant's dismissing his bill, or the defendant's dismissing the same, for want of prosecution, the defendant shall recover his costs: the complainant may amend bis bill before the defendant appears, or in a small matter afterwards, without paying costs; but if he amend after appearance, and in a material point, whereby the defendant shall be put to any extraordinary costs, such costs shall be paid before the complainant shall be at liberty to amend his bill. The defendant shall put in his answer, to be filed with the clerk in his office, at, or upon the next rule day after his appearance and bill filed, at the expiration of which time, if no answer shall be put in, the clerk upon request shall issue an attachment returnable to the next court; and if no answer shall be put in, upon return of such attachment executed, the complainant's bill shall be taken pro confesso, and the matter thereof decreed; and if the attachment shall be returned not executed, an attachment with proclamation shall be issued; and if upon return thereof no answer be put in, the complainant's bill shall be taken pro confesso, and the matter thereof decreed, as aforesaid. No process of contempt shall issue without oath made of the service of the subpoena, unless the same shall be returned served, by a sworn officer: every defendant shall be at liberty to swear to his answer before a justice of the peace. When any cross bill shall be preferred, the defendant or defendants in the first bill shall answer thereto, before the defendant or defendants in the second bill shall be compellable to put in his or their answer to such cross bill.
The complainant shall reply or file exceptions by the next succeeding rule day after the defendant shall have put in his answer; and if the Complainant, at the expiration of that time, shall neither reply nor file exceptions, the suit shall be dismissed, with costs. If any bill shall be dismissed for
want of a replication, or other proceedings, the court, if they see cause, may order the same to be retained upon motion and payment of costs. If the complainant's attorney doth except against the answer of any defendant or defendants, as insufficient, he may file his exceptions, and enter a rule to make a better answer by the next succeeding rule day; and if on or before the next succeeding rule day the defendant shall put in a sufficient answer, the same shall be received without costs; but if the defendant or defendants insist on the sufficiency of the answer, or neglect or refuse to put in a sufficient answer, or shall put in another insufficient answer, the complainant may set down his exceptions to be argued the next succeeding court: And after the expiration of such rule, or any second insufficient answer put in, no further or other answer shall be received but upon payment of costs: And if upon argument the complainant's exceptions shall be over ruled, or the defendant's answer adjudged insufficient, the complainant shall pay to the defendant or the defendant to the complainant, as the case shall be, such costs as shall be allowed by the court: If any defendant shall put in a second insufficient answer, which shall be so adjudged, such defendant shall be examined upon interrogatories, and committed 'til he shall perfectly answer those interrogatories, and pay costs: If the defendant after process of contempt put in an insufficient answer, which shall be so adjudged, the complainant shall not be obliged to take out a new subpæna, but may go on to the attachment with proclamation, as if no answer had been put in: that rules to plead, reply, rejoin, and for further proceedings, when necessary, shall be given, from month to month, as is herein before directed, for rules and proceedings at the common law. Where the complainant conceives sufficient matter to be confessed, by the defendant's answer, he may set down the cause for, and proceed to hearing, giving the defendant or his attorney ten days notice. No defendant shall be admitted to put in a rejoinder, unless it be filed on or before the next rule day after replication put in; but the complainant may proceed to the examination of witnesses. After an attachment, with proclamation returned, no plea or demurrer shall be received, unless by order of court, upon motion. If the complainant conceives any plea or demurrer to be nought, either for the matter or manner of it, he may
set it down to be argued; or if he thinks the plea good, but not true, he may take issue upon it, and proceed to proofs; and if such plea shall be adjudged false, the complainant shall have the same advantage as if a plea was found false by verdict, at common law. If a plea be pleaded, or demurrer put in, and over ruled, no other plea or demurrer shall thereafter be received; but the defendant shall answer to the allegations of the bill. The complainant at the next rule day after a plea or demurrer put in, may cause the same to be set down, to be argued; but if the complainant shall not proceed to have the same so set down, at the second rule day after plea or demurrer put in, the bill may be dismissed of course, with costs. Upon a plea or demurrer argued, and over ruled, costs shall be paid, as where an answer shall be judged insuflicient, and the defendant shall file his answer at the next rule day; but if adjudged good the defendant shall have his costs. If any defendant shall obstinately insist on a demurrer, and refuseth to answer, where the court shall be of opinion, that sufficient matter is alledged in the bill to oblige him to answer, and for the court to proceed upon, the bill shall be taken, pro con. fesso, and the matter thereof decreed accordingly. Upon a bill filed, and before the defendant puts in an answer, upon oath made, that any of the complainant's witnesses are aged and infirm, or going out of this colony, whereby the complainant thinks he is in danger of losing the benefit of their testimony, the clerk may issue a dedimus, to take the examination of such witnesses de bene esse, the party taking out such commission giving the adverse party reasonable notice of the time and place of executing the same. Commissions to examine witnesses may be issued by the clerk of the court, at any time after replication filed; the party taking out such commission giving ten days notice to the adverse party, of the time and place of executing the same. When any cause shall be at is sue, and the examination of witnesses returned, if the complainant shall not, on the next succeeding rule day thereafter, set down the cause, for hearing with the clerk, on the rule book, the defendant may have the cause set down at his request, and bring the same to hearing, giving the complainant, or his attorney, such notice as is herein before directed, for hearing upon bill, and answer.
Clerk shall XV. And be it further enacted by the authority aforehave the
said, That the clerks of the said counties of Brunssame fees for rules as for wick, Fairfax, Lunenburg, Frederick, Albemarle, and services in Augusta, shall be entitled to the same fees for services court.
done at the rules, as by law they are now allowed, for
the like services, in court. Grand juries
XVI. And be it further enacted, by the authority to be sum
aforesaid, That the courts of the said counties of moned. Brunswick, and Fairfax, in the months of June and
December; of Lunenburg, in the months of January and October; of Frederick, Albemarle, and Augusta, in the months of February and August; shall order
their sheriffs to summon twenty-four of the most caOrphan's
pable freeholders, to appear at the next court, to serve court in Lu- as a grand jury of inquest, for each of the said counnenburg to ties, respectively: And that an orphan's court be held, be held in
for the said counties of Lunenburg, in October anOctober, annually.
nually. Former acts,
XVII. And be it furiher enacted by the authority contrary to aforesaid, That all and every other act and acts, clause this act, sus- and clauses, as to so much thereof, only, as relates to pended.
holding courts in the said counties of Brunswick, Fairfax, Lunenburg, Frederick, Albemarle, and Augusta, monthly, and settling the proceedings therein, which are contrary to this act, shall, during the con
tinuance of this act, be, and are hereby declared to be Commence; suspended: And that this act shall continue and be in ment & continuance of
force, from and after the said twentieth day of June, this act.
until the tenth day of June, which shall be in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and fiftyone, and from thence to the end of the next session of Assembly.
Private acts. CHAP. 60. An act for enabling the justices of Prince
William, to levy tobacco on the inhabitants of the said county, to defray the charges of clearing a road therein, from
the Pignut, to the Blue-Ridge. 61. An act for obliging the justices of Isle of
Wight, to build a bridge over Blackwater-swamp, at Proctor's.