§ Mr. NANNETTI
asked the Secretary to the Treasury whether he has had a communication from the Chief Registrar of Friendly Societies in reference to the limitations of friendly societies, under section 8 of the Friendly Societies Act, by which they are unable to do business which industrial companies are permitted to do; whether it is the intention of the Government to introduce legislation placing mutual friendly societies and proprietary companies in the same position as to business; and whether he has yet replied to the Chief Registrar on the matter?
§ Mr. HOBHOUSE
I understand that communications have taken place between the President of the Board of Trade and the Chief Registrar of Friendly Societies in relation to insurance business and that such communications are still being carried on. It is not, so far as I know, the intention of Government to introduce legislation placing friendly societies and proprietary companies in the same position as to business.
§ Sir EDWIN CORNWALL
asked the Secretary to the Treasury whether, in any 1331W legislation which the Government intend to introduce with the object of placing collecting friendly societies and proprietary companies in the same position as to business, provision will be made to provide that mutual collecting societies to whom this privilege is granted shall be required to make the usual monetary deposit with the Accountant-General of the Court of Chancery, and that they shall in all other respects be subject to uniformity of treatment and control with that of proprietary and mutual life companies?
§ Mr. CHURCHILL
I have been asked by my hon. Friend the Secretary of the Treasury to answer this question. The Life Assurance Companies Act of 1870 exempted societies registered under the Friendly Societies Acts from its provisions, including the requirement to deposit in Court a sum of £20,000. I have no present intention of proposing any change in this exemption with regard to the smaller collecting friendly societies, but am at present favourably inclined to the view that the large collecting friendly societies ought to be brought under the provisions of the Life Assurance Companies Acts, including the liability to make a deposit of £20,000.