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  • The Negotiable Cow

    According to the urban legend, a check written on the side of a cow
    (Board of Inland Revenue v. Haddock, BBC "Misleading Cases", 1967)
    or sometimes a piglet (LA Law ? ) may be valid and collected upon.

    Suppose I receive such a check. Where do I endorse it?

    Do I merely flip the piglet over (or walk to the other side of
    the cow) and sign the other side of it?
    Or do I follow the literal meaning of indorsare, on the dorsum,
    and sign on the dorsal surface of the animal?
    Or is it necessary to skin the animal, to sign on the suede side
    of the hide?

    Especially if it's the last case, what do I do with the rest of
    the cow? Do I consider it like the stubs on mailed checks
    ("This stub must be removed before cashing")? Does that mean
    it's mine to keep, and make hamburgers out of if I want? Or
    do I have to give the entire animal back to the bank, so that
    the cancelled cow may be returned to the payor?

    My bank doesn't send me back my cancelled checks. They email
    me a picture, and tell me they keep the actual checks on file
    for some number of years. Do they have special walk-in freezers
    for cancelled cows?

    If I need proof of payment, will a photocopy of the cow be accepted?

    --
    - David Chesler <[email protected]>
    Iacta alea est


  • #2
    The Negotiable Cow

    On Thu, 01 Apr 2004 14:56:59 -0500, David Chesler
    <[email protected]> wrote:
    According to the urban legend, a check written on the side of a cow(Board of Inland Revenue v. Haddock, BBC "Misleading Cases", 1967)or sometimes a piglet (LA Law ? ) may be valid and collected upon.
    A literal reading of American statutes probably would so indicate, and
    the IRS reportedly receives the occasional check written on a shirt.
    Suppose I receive such a check. Where do I endorse it?
    Do I merely flip the piglet over (or walk to the other side ofthe cow) and sign the other side of it? Or do I follow the literal meaning of indorsare, on the dorsum,and sign on the dorsal surface of the animal? Or is it necessary to skin the animal, to sign on the suede sideof the hide?
    We discussed this briefly in the Commercial Law case I took in law
    school. Someone suggested the udder side.

    In A.P. Herbert's story, the check was written on both sides and the
    back, leaving only underneath. Unfortunately, the cow was reported to
    have objected to being endorsed.
    Especially if it's the last case, what do I do with the rest ofthe cow? Do I consider it like the stubs on mailed checks("This stub must be removed before cashing")? Does that meanit's mine to keep, and make hamburgers out of if I want? Ordo I have to give the entire animal back to the bank, so thatthe cancelled cow may be returned to the payor?
    I think the idea is that the entire check is to be run through the
    system. :-)
    My bank doesn't send me back my cancelled checks. They emailme a picture, and tell me they keep the actual checks on filefor some number of years. Do they have special walk-in freezersfor cancelled cows?
    I suspect that they would have to come up with something different for
    this.
    If I need proof of payment, will a photocopy of the cow be accepted?
    I'd ask for a receipt. :-)

    Daniel Reitman

    Comment


    • #3
      The Negotiable Cow

      "Daniel R. Reitman" <[email protected]> wrote:
      David Chesler <[email protected]> wrote:
      According to the urban legend, a check written on the side of a cow (Board of Inland Revenue v. Haddock, BBC "Misleading Cases", 1967) or sometimes a piglet (LA Law ? ) may be valid and collected upon.
      In A.P. Herbert's story, the check was written on both sides and the back, leaving only underneath. Unfortunately, the cow was reported to have objected to being endorsed.
      I wonder why they didn't use the tail? That would be permitted under
      section 3-204(a) of the UCC which says, "For the purpose of
      determining whether a signature is made on an instrument, a paper
      affixed to the instrument is a part of the instrument."

      Stu

      Comment


      • #4
        The Negotiable Cow

        On Sun, 04 Apr 2004 16:50:37 -0400, "Stuart O. Bronstein"
        <[email protected]> wrote:
        I wonder why they didn't use the tail? That would be permitted undersection 3-204(a) of the UCC which says, "For the purpose ofdetermining whether a signature is made on an instrument, a paperaffixed to the instrument is a part of the instrument."
        Well, for one thing, I don't know what English law provided at the
        time. :-)

        In any event, the cow probably would have objected to that as well.

        Daniel Reitman

        Comment

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