Building Societies Act

Link to law: http://laws.gov.ag/acts/chapters/cap-60.pdf
Published: 1955

Building Societies (CAP. 60 1

CHAPTER 60

THE BUILDING SOCIETIES ACT

Arrangement of Sections
Section

1. Short title.
2. Interpretation.
3. Incorporation of societies.
4. Purposes for which societies may be established.
5. Limitation of liability of members.
6. Power to borrow money.
7. Matters to be set forth in the rules.
8. Rules to be made.
9. Alteration of rules.

10. Rules may be made to provide forms of conveyance, etc.
11. Evidence of registration.
12. Rules binding on members and others.
13. Officers to give security.
14. Officers to account.
15. Investment of surplus.
16. Payment of sums not exceeding $150 when members

or depositors die intestate.
17. Member dying intestate leaving infant next of kin.
18. Punishment of fraud in withholding money, etc.
19. Initiation of proceedings.
20. Proceedings necessary for the termination or dissolu-

tion of a society.
21. Societies may unite with others, or one society may

transfer its engagements to another.
22. Determination of disputes by arbitration.
23. Court may order compliance with the decision of

arbitrators.
24. Determination of disputes by Registrar.
25. Determination of disputes by Court.
26. Determination to be final.
27. Buildings may be purchased or leased.
28. Minors may be elected members.

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2 CAP. 60) Building Societies

29. Shares may be held by two or more persons.
30. Annual account and statement of funds.
3 1. Penalties.
32. Fees of Registrar.
33. Regulations.

SCHEDULE A.
SCHEDULE B.
SCHEDULE C.
SCHEDULE D.

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Building Societies (CAP. 60 3

BUILDING SOCIETIES

(26th October, 1 9 5 5 . ) 811955.
1211974.
1211984.

S.I. 3911989.

1. This Act may be cited as the Building Societies Act. Short

2. In this Act- Interpretation.
" permanent society" means a society which has not by

its rules any fixed date or specified result at which
it shall terminate;

"society" means a building society established under
this Act;

" terminating society" means a society which by its rules
is to terminate at a fixed date or when a result
specified in its rules is attained;

"the Court" means the High Court;

"the Registrar" means the Registrar of the Court, who
shall, for the purposes of this Act, be the Registrar
of Building Societies.

3. Every society shall, upon receiving a certificate of Incorporation of
incorporation under this Act in the form set forth in Schedule A.
A, become a body corporate by its registered name, having
a common seal and perpetual succession, until terminated
or dissolved in manner herein provided.

4. (1) Any number of persons may establish a society z!;;;2;ie,
for the purpose of raising by the subscriptions of members be
a stock or fund for making advances to members out of the established.
funds of the society.

(2) A society may be either a terminating society or
a permanent society.

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(3) Advances made by a society out of its funds shall
be made upon the security of a mortgage of a freehold or
a leasehold estate or upon the security of the withdrawal value
of shares held by members of the society.

(4) Any society shall, so far as is necessary for the pur-
pose of advances made upon the security of a mortgage, have
power-

(a) to hold land, with the right of foreclosure;

( 6 ) from time to time to raise funds by the issue
of shares of one or more denominations either paid up
in full or to be paid by periodical or other subscrip-
tions, and with or without accumulating interest; and

(c) to repay such funds when no longer required
for the purposes of the society:

Provided always that any land to which a society may
become absolutely entitled by foreclosure or other extinguish-
ment of the right of redemption shall, as soon after as may
be conveniently practicable, be sold or converted into money.

Limitation of 5 . The liability of a member of a society in respect
liability of
members. of any share upon which no advance has been made shall

be limited to the amount actually paid or in arrear on such
share, and in respect of any share upon which an advance
has been made shall be limited to the amount payable thereon
under any mortgage or other security or under the rules of
the society.

Power to borrow 6. With respect to the borrowing of money by societies
money.

the following provisions shall have effect:-

(a) a society may, within the limits specified in
paragraph ( b ) , borrow money at interest from members
or other persons, or from corporate bodies, joint stock
companies or from any permanent or terminating society
to be applied for the purposes of the society;

( b ) in a permanent or terminating society the total
amount so borrowed may not, at any one time, exceed
fifty per centum of the asset value of mortgage loans
held by the company; and

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Building Societies (CAP. 60 5

(c) every deposit book or acknowledgement or
security of any kind for a deposit or loan by a society
shall have printed or written thereon the whole of sec-
tion 5 and this section.

7. The rules of every society shall set forth- Matters to be set
forth in the

(a) the name of the society and the chief office or rdeS.

place of meeting for the business of the society;

(b) the manner in which the stock or funds of the
society are to be raised, the terms upon which paid up
shares (if any) are to be issued and repaid, whether
preferential shares are to be issued, and if so, within
what limits, if any; whether the society intends to bor-
row money and, if so, within what limits, not exceeding
the limits, prescribed by this Act.

(c) the purposes to which the funds of the society
are to be applied and the manner in which they are to
be invested;

(6) the terms upon which shares may be withdrawn
and upon which mortgages may be redeemed;

(e) the manner of altering and rescinding the rules
of the society and of making additional rules;

(/) the manner of appointing, remunerating and
removing the board of directors or committee of manage-
ment, auditors and other officeq

(g) the manner of calling general and special
meetings of the members;

(h ) provision for an annual or more frequent audit
of the accounts, and inspection by the auditors of the
mortgages and other securities belonging to the society;

(2) whether disputes between the society and any
of its members or any person claiming by and through
any member, or under the rules, shall be settled by
reference to the Court, or to the Registrar, or to
arbitration;

@ provision for the device, custody, and use of
the seal of the society, which shall in all cases bear the
registered name thereof;

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(k) provision for the custody of the mortgage deeds
and other securities belonging to the society;

(I) the powers and duties of the board of directors
or committee of management and other officers;

(m) the fines and forfeitures that may be imposed
on members;

(n) the manner in which the society, whether ter-
minating or permanent shall be terminated or dissolved.

Rules to be made. 8. The persons intending to establish a society shall
transmit to the Registrar two copies of the rules agreed upon
by them for the government of the society, signed by three
of such persons and by the intended secretary or other officer;
and the Registrar, if satisfied that the rules contain all the
provisions prescribed in section 7, and that they are in con-
formity with this Act, shall return one copy of the rules to
the secretary or other officer of the society, with a certificate
of incorporation, and shall retain and register the other copy:

Provided that no society shall be registered under this
Act in a name identical with that in which any subsisting
society is already registered.

*Iteration of rules. 9. Any society may alter or rescind any rule or make
any additional rules in the manner which its rules direct.
Every society altering or rescinding any rule, or making any
additional rule, shall forward two copies of every resolution
for rescission of rules, and of every alteration of or addition
to its rules, signed by three members and the secretary to
the Registrar, who, if satisfied that such alteration rescis-
sion or addition is in conformity with this Act, shall return
one of the copies to the secretary or other officer of the society
with a certificate of registration in the form set forth in

schedule B. Schedule B and retain and register the other copy.

Rules may be
made to provide

10. Any society may in a schedule to its rules describe
forms of the forms of conveyance, mortgage, transfer, agreement,
conveyance, etc. bond, security for deposit or loan or other instrument

necessary for carrying its purposes into execution.

Evidence of 1 . Any certificate of incorporation or registration,
registration. or other document relating to a society, purporting to be

signed by the Registrar, shall, in the absence of any evidence

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Building Societies (CAP. 60 7

to the contrary, be received by the Court and elsewhere
without proof of the signature of the Registrar; and a copy
of the rules of a society, certified by the secretary or other
officer of the society to be a true copy of its registered rules,
shall, in the absence of any evidence to the contrary, be
received as evidence of the rules.

12. The rules of a society shall be binding on the =zb,"rd,$g On
members and officers of the society and on all persons claim- others.
ing on account of a member or under the rules, all of whom
shall be deemed and taken to have full notice thereof.

13. (1) Every officer of a society' having the receipt ~ ~ ~ ~ ; , t O give
or charge of any money belonging to the society shall, before
taking upon himself the execution of this office, enter into
a bond with one sufficient surety at the least, according to
the form set forth in Schedule C , or give the security of a schedule C.
guarantee society, or such other security as the society directs,
in such sum as the society may require.

(2) Every such bond, guarantee or other security shall
be conditioned for the rendering of a true and just account
of all moneys received and paid by the officer on account
of the society, and for payment of all sums of money due
from time to time to the society at such times as its rules
appoint, or as the society may require such officer so to do.

14. Every accounting officer of a society or his per- Officers to
account. sonal representative, shall, upon demand made or notice in

writing given or left at his last known or usual place of
residence, give in his account, as may be required by the
board of directors or committee of management of the society,
to be examined and allowed or disallowed by them, and shall,
on the like demand or notice pay over all moneys remaining
in his hands and deliver all securities and effects, books,
papers, and property of the society in his hands or custody
to such person as the society appoints; and in case of any
neglect or refusal to deliver such account or to pay over such
moneys or to deliver such securities and effects, books, papers
and property in manner aforesaid, the society may sue upon
the bond of the accounting officer concerned or may apply
to the Court, which may proceed thereupon in a summary

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8 CAP. 60) Building Societies

way and make such order thereon as to the Court in its discre-
tion may seem just, which order shall be final and conclusive.

Investment of
surplus.

15. (1) Any society may from time to time, as the
rules permit, invest any portion of its funds, not immediate-
ly required for its purposes, upon real or leasehold securities,
or in the securities of the Government of the United Kingdom
or of any British Possession, or in such other way as by
unanimous resolution of the directors may be determined.

(2) For the purposes of investments in the public funds
or otherwise where the appointment of trustees may be
required, it shall be lawful for the society or board of direc-
tors or committee of management thereof from time to time
to appoint or remove trustees.

Payment of sums
not exceeding

16. If any member of or depositor with a society, hav-
$150 when ing in the funds &ereof a sum of money not exceeding one
members Or hundred and fifty dollars, dies intestate, the amount due may
depositors die
intestate. be paid to the person who appears to the directors or com-

mittee of management of the society to be entitled, under
the law for the time being regulating the devolution of per-
sonal estate applicable to the case to receive the same, without
taking out letters of administration, upon the society receiv-
ing satisfactory evidence of death and a statutory declara-
tion that the member or depositor died intestate and that
the person so claiming is entitled as aforesaid:

Provided that whenever the society after the decease of
any member or depositor has paid any such sum of money
to the person who at the time appeared to be entitled to the
effects of the deceased, under the belief that such deceased
had died intestate, the payment shall be valid and effectual
with respect to any demand from any other person as next
of kin or as the lawful representative of such deceased member
or depositor against the funds of the society, but nevertheless
such next of kin or representative shall have his lawful remedy
for the amount against the person who received the same.

Member dying
intestate leaving

17. Whenever a member of a society under this Act,
infant next of having executed a mortgage to the society containing a power
kin. of sale, shall die intestate leaving an infant next of kin, it

shall be lawful for the said society, after selling the premises
so mortgaged to them, to pay to the administrator or
administratrix of the deceased member any money to the

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Building Societies (CAP. 60 9

amount of seven hundred and twenty dollars, which shall
remain in the hands of the said society after paying the
amount due to the society and the costs and expenses of the
sale, any law or Act in force in Antigua and Barbuda to
the contrary notwithstanding. The said sum of seven hun-
dred and twenty dollars to be considered as personal estate,
and liable to duty accordingly.

18. If any person by false representation of any kind k$hyt of
obtains possession of any moneys, securities, books, papers, withholding
or other effects of a society, or, having the same in his posses- etc.
sion, withholds or misapplies, or wilfully applies the whole
or any part thereof to purposes other than those expressed
or directed in the rules of the society and authorized by this
Act, he shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on
summary conviction to a penalty not exceeding one thou-
sand dollars and it shall be lawful for the Magistrate to make
an order that he forthwith deliver up to the society all such
moneys, securities, books, papers, or other effects, and do
forthwith repay to the society the amount of money applied
improperly, and in default of such delivery of effects or repay-
ment of such amount of money or payment of such penalty
it shall be lawful for the Magistrate to sentence him to be
imprisoned, with or without hard labour, for a term not ex-
ceeding three months; but nothing herein contained shall
prevent any such person from being proceeded against by
way of indictment if a conviction has not been previously
obtained against him for the same offence under the provi-
sions of this Act.

19. Proceedings under section 18 may be taken by Initiation proceedi gs. of
or at the instance of-

( a ) the society; or

( b ) any member authorized by the society or by
the board of directors or committee of management of
the society or by the Registrar; or

(c ) the Registrar.

20. (1) A society may terminate or be dissolved- Proceedings necessary for the
( a ) upon the happening of any event declared by zzi,$'pa

its rules to bring about or to be the termination of the society.
society;

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10 CAP. 60) Building Societies

(b ) by dissolution in manner prescribed by its rules;

(c) by dissolution with the consent of three-fourths
of its members holding not less than two-thirds of the
number of shares in the society, testified by the
signatures to the instrument of dissolution;

(d) by winding up, either voluntarily under the
supervision of the Court or by the Court, if the Court
shall so order, on the petition of any member authoriz-
ed by three-fourths of the members present at a general
meeting of the society specially called for the purpose
to present the same on behalf of the society, or on the
petition of any judgment creditor for not less than two
hundred and fifty dollars.

(2) General rules and orders for regulating the pro-
ceedings of the Court under paragraph (4 of subsection (1)
may be made by the Chief Justice.

(3) Every instrument of dissolution shall set forth-

(a) the liabilities and assets of the society in detail;

( b ) the number of members and the amount stan-
ding to their credit in the books of the society;

(c ) the claims of depositors and other creditors and
the provision to be made for their payments;

(d) the intended appropriation or division of the
funds and property of the society;

(e) the names of one or more persons to be
appointed trustees for the special purpose, and their
remuneration.

(4) Alterations in an instrument of dissolution may be
made with the like consent, testified in the same manner .
as in the original instrument.

(5) Every instrument of dissolution and all alterations
therein shall be registered in the manner provided for the
registration of rules and shall be binding on all members
of the society.

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Building Societies (CAP. 60 11

(6) Notice of the commencement and termination of
every dissolution or winding up shall be sent to the Registrar
and registered by him.

2 1. TWO or more societies may unite and become one Societies may
unite with society, with or without any dissolution or division of the others, or one

funds of such societies or either of them, or a society may society may
transfer its engagements to any other such society upon such f n ~ a ~ m ~ ~ t s to
terms as shall be agreed upon by three-fourths of the members another.
(holding not less than tho-thirds of the whole number of "
shares) of each of such societies respectively present at general
meetings convened for the purpose. Notice of every such
union or transfer shall be sent to the Registrar and registered
by him.

22. Where the rules of a society direct disputes to Determination of
disputes by

be referred to arbitration the following provisions shall arbitration.
apply -

(a) the arbitrators shall be named and elected in
the manner provided by the rules or, if there be no such
provision, at the first general meeting of the society;

( 6 ) none of the arbitrators shall be persons who are
beneficially interested, directly or indirectly, in the funds
of the society;

(c) not less than three arbitrators shall be chosen
by ballot in each case of dispute, the number of ar-
bitrators and the mode of ballot being determined by
the rules of the society;

(4 the names of the arbitrators shall be duly
entered in the minute book of the society, and in the
case of death or refusal or neglect of any of the arbitrators
to act, the society, at a general meeting, shall name and
elect an arbitrator to act in the place of the arbitrator
dying, refusing or neglecting to act;

( e ) whatever awards shall be made by the
arbitrators or the major part of them, according to the
true purport and meaning of the rules of the society,
shall determine the dispute.

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12 CAP. 60) Building Societies

Court may order
compliance with 23. Should either of the parties to the dispute refuse
the decision of or neglect to c o m ~ l v with or conform to the award within - . ,
arbitrators. a time to be limited therein, the Court, upon being satisfied

that the award has been made and of the refusal of the party
to comply therewith, shall treat the award as if it were a
judgment of the Court, and enforce compliance therewith
upon the petition of any person concerned, in the same man-
ner as it would enforce a judgment.

Determination of 24. Where the parties to any dispute arising in a socie-
disputes by
Registrar. ty agree to refer the dispute to the Registrar, or where the

rules of the society direct disputes to be referred to the
Registrar, his award shall have the same effect as that of
arbitrators.

Determination of 25. The Court may hear and determine a dispute in
disputes by
Court. the following cases-

(a) if it appears to the Court, upon the petition
of any person concerned, that application has been made
by either party to the dispute to the other party, for
the purpose of having the dispute settled by arbitration
under the rules of the society, and that the application
has not within forty days been complied with, or that
the arbitrators have refused or for a period of twenty-
one days have neglected to make any award;

(6) where the rules of the society direct disputes
to be referred to the Court.

Determination to
be final. 26. Every determination of a dispute by arbitrators

or by the Court or by the Registrar under this Act shall be
binding and conclusive on all parties, and shall be final, and
shall not be subject to appeal:

Provided always that the arbitrators or the Registrar,
as the case may be, may, at the request of either party, state
a case for the opinion of the Court on any question of law,
and shall have power to grant to either party to the dispute
such discovery, as to documents or otherwise, as might be
granted by the Court.

Buildings be 27. A society may purchase, build, hire, or take upon
purchased or
leased. lease any building for conducting its business, and may

purchase or hold upon lease any land for the purpose of erec-

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Building Societies (CAP. 60 13

ting thereon a building for conducting its business, and may
sell, exchange, or let such building or any part thereof.

28. Any person under the age of eighteen years may Minors may be
elected members.

be admitted as a member of a society, the rules of which
do not prohibit such admission, and may give all necessary
acquittances, but during his minority he shall not hold any
office in the society.

29. Two or more persons may jointly hold a share ~ ~ ~ ; y ~ ~ o ~ r
or shares in a society; and all shares held jointly by any two more persons.
or more persons in any society existing before the commence-
ment of this Act, the rules whereof do not prohibit such joint
holding, shall be deemed to be lawfully so held.

30. (1) The secretary or other officer of a society shall, 2~:::~;:;;:~
once at least in every year, prepare- funds.

(a) an account of all receipts and expenditure of
the society since the preceding statement;

(6 ) a general statement of its funds and effects,
liabilities and assets, showing-

(i) the amount due to the holders of the various
classes of shares, and to depositors and
creditors for loans;

(ii) the balance due or outstanding on their mor-
tgage securities, not including prospective
interest; and

(iii) the amount otherwise invested.

(2) Every such account and statement shall be attested
by the auditor or auditors to whom the mortgage deeds and
other securities belonging to the society shall be produced;
and the account and statement shall be countersigned by the
secretary or other officer.

(3) Every member, depositor, and creditor for loans
shall be entitled to receive from the society a copy of the
account and statement, and a copy thereof shall be sent to
the Registrar within fourteen days after the annual or general
meeting at which it is presented.

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Penalties. 31. (1) If any society hereafter formed, or any per-
sons representing themselves to be a society, commence
business without first obtaining a certificate of incorpora-
tion, or if any society make default in forwarding to the
Registrar any returns or information by this Act required,
or make a return wilfully false in any respect, the person
or persons by whom such business is so commenced, or by
whom default is made, or who have made such false return,
shall be liable on summary conviction, for every day that
business is so carried on, or for every such default or false
return, to a fine of one hundred and fifty dollars.

(2) If any society receives loans or deposits in excess
of the limits prescribed by this Act, the directors or commit-
tee of management of the society shall be personally liable
for the amount so received in excess.

Fees of Registrar.
Schedule D. 32. The fees specified in Schedule D shall be paid

to the Registrar by every society.

Regulations. 33. The Minister may make Regulations for carry-
lng out the purposes and intention of this Act and may alter
the Schedule of fees hereto annexed.

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Building Societies (CAP. 60 15

SCHEDULE A. S.3

I,. ............................................................ .Registrar

of Building Societies in Antigua and Barbuda hereby certify

........................................................................ that the

Building Society established at ..................... .....................

............... in Antigua and Barbuda is incorporated under the

Building Societies Act.

GIVEN under my hand this.. ............ .day of.. .............
19 .

................................................
Registrar of Building Societies.

SCHEDULE B.

The Registrar hereby certifies that the foregoing alteration of

(or addition to) the rules of the ........................................

Building Society, established at .........................................

........................... .is registered under the Building Societies
Act.

............... GIVEN under my hand this ............... day of
19 .

................................................
Registrar of Building Societies.

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16 CAP. 60) Building Societies

SCHEDULE C. S. 13

...................... Know all men by these presents that we

one of the officers of the .................................................

Building Society established at ..........................................

in the .................................. .of.. .................................

and.. ................................... of.. ...................................

(as surety on behalf of the said ........................................

................. ) are jointly and severally held and firmly bound

to the said Society in the sum of ......................................

to be paid to the said society, for which payment well and truly
to be made we jointly and severally bind ourselves and each of
us by himself, our and each of our heirs, executors and ad-
ministrators, firmly by these presents, sealed with our seals.

Dated the .................... day of .................... in the .year

of our Lord 19 .

Whereas the above-bounden .......................................

hath been duly appointed to the office of ...........................
of the.. ..................................... ...................................

Building Society, established as aforesaid, and he, together with
the above-bounden .........................................................
as his surety, have entered into the above-written bond, subject
to the conditions hereinafter contained.

Now, therefore, the condition of the above-written bond, is
such that if the said .......................................................
shall and do render a just and true account of all moneys received
and paid by him and shall and do pay over all the moneys re-
maining in his hands, and assign and transfer or deliver all securities
and effects, books, papers and property of or belonging to the
said society in his hands or custody, to such person or persons
as the said society shall appoint, according to the rules of the said
society, together with the proper or legal receipts or vouchers for
such payments, then the above-written bond shall be void and
of no effect, crthenvise shall be and remain in full force and virtue.

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Building Societies (CAP. 60 17

SCHEDULE D. S. 32

For registering any document 12c. a folio
-but in no case less than ................................. 60c.

For granting certificate of incorporation.. ................... .$5.04

For granting any other certificate required by the
Act .................................................................. 72c.

Acting as arbitrator in any matters referred to him for every
day during which he shall be so engaged ............... $5.04
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