Court of Common Pleas of New Jersey, Bergen County, 1933.
12 N.J. Misc. 840, 175 A. 908
-P sues D over promissory note alleged to have been made by D for 15,400 Italian Lires.Is the note negotiable?
The note is negotiable in form unless the provision for payment of Italian Lire makes it non-negotiable.
-To be negotiable, an instrument must contain an unconditional promise or order to pay a sum certain in money.What is money? Money is purely a legal institution; it is impossible without law.
-Money is what the law or custom makes receivable for payments of taxes and debts.
-An instrument payable in the money of any country is negotiable for in all these cases the sum of money is fixed by the par of exchange on the known denomination of currency with reference to the par.
-Where a note is made payable in a country in the money or coins of another country, which money or coins have a value fixed by the law or under the authority of the law of the country where the note is payable, and which value can by a simple mathematical calculation be expressed in the value of the lawful money of the latter country, such a note by the rules of the law merchant and under the Uniform Negotiable Instruments Act is negotiable.
-The contract sued upon here is a contract for the payment of money, not a commodity.
-This note was made for a sum certain, because a note for any number of Italian Lire is only another form of expression for the equivalent in dollars, which equivalent is now established under the authority of the legislation previously referred to.
KINDS OF NEGOTIABLE INSTRUMENTS
1. Promissory note
-a promise to pay money
•unconditional promise in writing made by one person to another signed by the maker
•engaging to pay on demand,or at a fixed or determinable future time a sum certain in money to order or to bearer
•where a note is drawn to the maker’s own order, not complete until indorsed by him (Sec. 184, NIL).