James Rae left his wife and daughter, Agnes Kelly and Agnes Rae, a £40 owed by John Murray, junior. Kelly's second husband, William Duncan, being drowned in debt, renounced his right over his wife's effects. One of Duncan's debts was jointly shared with Bailie Andrew Glass, and held by David Loch. Loch obtained a decree from the High Court of Admiralty against the two, and Bailie Glass had Duncan imprisoned in the St. Andrews Tolbooth until he could pay his share of the debt. In order to free her husband from jail, Kelly and Rae endorsed the above-mentioned bill to Glass. Duncan then signed his furniture over to Rae as security. After paying Loch Duncan's share of the debt, Glass attempted to collect payment of Murray's bill, but was unable. He then raised an action before the Sheriff of Fife against Murray, Kelly, and Rae, charging the latter two with liability for the value of the bill. He argued that value was given to Kelly and Rae for the endorsement: the release of Duncan from prison, and the above-mentioned furniture. The Sheriff found Kelly and Rae liable, but Lord Covington and the Court determined that as a vestita viro (married woman), Kelly's endorsement of the bill was null and void.

Published Reports

Mungo Brown, Supplement to the Dictionary of the Decisions of the Court of Session (1826), pg. 395