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General Laws

Section 18. When a passbook or other instrument as evidence of a depositor’s account issued by any bank has been lost, stolen or destroyed, the person in whose name it was issued, or in the case of a joint account, by the joint owners thereof may make written application to such bank for payment of the amount of the deposit represented by said book or other instrument or for issuance of a duplicate book or other instrument therefor. The application shall include an affidavit signed and sworn to that the person, or persons, making such application is a lawful owner, or are the lawful owners, of said passbook or other instrument, that said passbook or other instrument has been lost, stolen or destroyed, and that no lawful owner has, in any way, transferred, pledged or assigned said passbook or other instrument or any interest in the deposits therein. The application shall further include an agreement, in writing, to indemnify the bank from and against any and all claims, expenses and liabilities in any way resulting from the bank’s action on the application by the payment of amounts due on said passbook or other instrument or by the issuance of a duplicate book or other instrument therefor. All signatures contained with such application shall be duly notarized. Upon receipt of such application, the bank may pay the amount due on said passbook or other instrument or may issue a duplicate book or other instrument therefor. The provisions of this section shall apply to passbooks and other instruments issued by a bank which subsequently has merged in, consolidated with or transferred its deposit liabilities to another bank.

When payment is made or a duplicate book or other instrument is issued in accordance with this section and after presentation of reasonable identification, a bank shall not be liable to any person on account of its action on the application, payments of the amount due on said passbook or other instrument or issuance of a duplicate book or other instrument therefor, except that a bank may be liable to a transferee, pledgee or assignee who, prior to such action, payment or issuance, has given the bank written notice of the transfer, pledge or assignment.

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