Putnam's Handy Law Book for the Layman


Albert Sidney Bolles, Ph.D., LL.D.

Formerly Professor of Commercial Law and Banking in the
University of Pennsylvania, also Lecturer on the
Same Subjects in Haverford College

G.P. Putnam's Sons
New York and London
The Knickerbocker Press

Copyright, 1921
Albert Sidney Bolles

Published September, 1921
Reprinted December, 1921
Reprinted March, July, 1922
Reprinted April, 1923

Made in the United States of America



What useful purpose can this book serve? Most of the laws under which we live are kept, not from knowing them, but because the good sense of individuals leads them along legal ways. Yet in many cases their good sense fails to discover the right way. Thus, the receiver of a check on a bank must present it within a reasonable time after receiving it, and if he keeps it longer the risk of loss, should the bank fail, is his own. What is this reasonable time? One man says three days, another a week, another a month. So one's common sense fails to establish a definite reasonable time. It is needful to have the time fixed, and the law therefore has established a reasonable time. There are many cases like this in which one's common sense fails to furnish a correct, yet needful guide.

This little book contains many of the legal principles that are in most frequent use, as readers will learn who carefully read it. Again, if they do not always find an answer to their questions, it is believed that in many cases they will find enough law of a general nature from which they can safely solve their questions. They are therefore besought to do something more than merely consult this book for the purpose of finding ready and complete answers to their questions, to read it and become familiar with its contents.

Besides the law presented here the reader should learn to be cautious, and not trust too much his [vi]own judgment when no rule can be found for his guidance. Many a person has written his own will, as he has a right to do, and after giving a legacy to a relative or friend has nullified the gift by having the legatee, through the testator's ignorance, sign as a witness. The writer knew a railway president who had the temerity to draw the writing containing an important contract between his railroad and another, and who, by unintentionally putting a comma in the wrong place, made his road instead of the other responsible for large losses. If this book shall make the reader cautious concerning the legality of his undertakings, it will be worth to him many times its price.




Do It Yourself Legal Forms and Software
Layman's Guide to Law
Page Updated 12:26 PM Sunday 5/4/2014