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Magistrates' Courts (Amendment) Act 1991



No. 13 of 1991

I assent,

25th October, 1991



[15th August, 1991.]

BE IT ENACTED by the King and the Legislative Assembly of Tonga in the Legislature of the Kingdom as follows:

1. (1) This Act may be cited as the Magistrates' Courts (Amendment) Act 1991.

(2) The Magistrates' Courts Act, Chapter 11, as amended, is in this Act referred to as the Principal Act.

2. Sections 4, 5 and 6 of this Act shall come into force on a day appointed by His Majesty in Council.

3. Sections 29 and 30(1) of the Principal Act are amended by deleting the figure "15" and substituting the figure "16".

4. Sections 53 and 55 to 58, inclusive, of the Principal Act are amended by deleting the words "police officer" and "officer" wherever they occur and substituting the word "bailiff".

5. Section 54 of the Principal Act is repealed and replaced by the following new section:

"54. Distress warrants shall be issued as follows -

(a) a bailiff charged with the execution of any distress warrant shall without delay seize such goods of any person against whom a warrant of distress has been issued as may be lawfully seized and shall make an inventory thereof. Unless the person upon whose goods the distress is levied consents to their being auctioned where they stand the bailiff shall remove all goods seized under a distress warrant to the public square of the village and there sell them by public auction after giving notice by fanongonongo of such sale. He shall deliver to each person whose goods are sold a certificate of the amount realised by the sale;

(b) any surplus realised by the sale over and above the amount to be levied shall be paid by the bailiff to the person against whom the distress warrant was issued and such person shall give a receipt for the same to the bailiff. Where any person against whom a warrant of distress has been issued pays or tenders to the bailiff executing it in the sum or sums mentioned therein together with the costs of the warrant or produces to him the receipt of the Court for the sum due at the date of such receipt the bailiff shall cease to execute the warrant;

(c) a warrant of distress shall not be executed after sunset nor on a Sunday;

(d) houses, fixtures, growing crops, the clothing of a person and his family, and, to the value of $200, the tools and implements of his trade shall not be taken under a warrant of distress;

(e) execution shall not be levied more than once under the same warrant."

6. Form 11 in the Schedule to the Principal Act is amended by deleting the words "Police Officers and to each and all of the constables within the Kingdom" and inserting the words "Bailiff and to each and all of the bailiffs within the Kingdom".

Passed in the Legislative Assembly this 15th day of August 1991.


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