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d. If the bankrupt, or any of his creditors, shall appear, within the time limited, and controvert the facts alleged in the petition, the judge shall determine, as soon as may be, the issues presented by the pleadings, without the intervention of a jury, except in cases where a jury trial is given by this Act, and makes the adjudication or dismiss the petition.
e. If on the last day within which pleadings may be filed none are filed by the bankrupt or any of his creditors, the judge shall on the next day, if present, or as soon thereafter as practicable, make the adjudication or dismiss the petition.
f. If the judge is absent from the district, or the division of the district in which the petition is pending, on the next day after the last day on which pleadings may be filed, and none have been filed by the bankrupt or any of his creditors, the clerk shall forthwith refer the case to the referee.
g. Upon the filing of a voluntary petition the judge shall hear the petition and make the adjudication or dismiss the petition. If the judge is absent from the district, or the division of the district in which the petition is filed at the time of the filing, the clerk shall forthwith refer the case to the referee.
SEC. 19. JURY TRIALS.-a. A person against whom an involuntary petition has been filed shall be entitled to have a trial by jury, in respect to the question of his insolvency, except as herein otherwise provided, and any act of bankruptcy alleged in such petition to have been committed, upon filing a written application therefor at or before the time within which an answer may be filed. If such application is not filed within such time, a trial by jury shall be deemed to have been waived.
b. If a jury is not in attendance upon the court, one may be specially summoned for the trial, or the case may be postponed, or, if the case is pending in one of the district courts within the jurisdiction of a circuit court of the United States, it may be certified for trial to the circuit court sitting at the same place, or by consent of parties when sitting at any other place in the same district, if such circuit court has or is to have a jury first in attendance.
c. The right to submit matters in controversy, or an alleged offense under this Act, to a jury shall be determined and enjoyed, except as provided by this Act, according to the United States laws now in force or such as may be hereafter enacted in relation to trials by jury.
SEC. 20. OATHS, AFFIRMATIONS.- a. Oaths required by this Act, except upon hearings in court, may be administered by (1) referees; (2) officers authorized to administer oaths in proceedings before the courts of the United States, or under the laws of the State where the same are to be taken; and (3) diplomatic or consular officers of the United States in any foreign country.
b. Any person conscientiously opposed to taking an oath may, in lieu
thereof, affirm. Any person who shall affirm falsely shall be punished as for the making of a false oath.
SEC. 21. EVIDENCE-a. A court of bankruptcy may, upon application of any officer, bankrupt, or creditor, by order require any designated person, including the bankrupt, who is a competent witness under the laws of the State in which the proceedings are pending, to appear in court or before a referee or the judge of any State court, to be examined concerning the acts, conduct, or property of a bankrupt whose estate is in process of administration under this Act.
b. The right to take depositions in proceedings under this Act shall be determined and enjoyed according to the United States laws now in force, or such as may be hereafter enacted relating to the taking of depositions, except as herein provided.
c. Notice of the taking of depositions shall be filed with the referee in every case. When depositions are to be taken in opposition to the allowance of a claim notice shall also be served upon the claimant, and when in opposition to a discharge notice shall also be served upon the bankrupt.
d. Certified copies of proceedings before a referee, or of papers, when issued by the clerk or referee, shall be admitted as evidence with like force and effect as certified copies of the records of district courts of the United States are now or may hereafter be admitted as evidence.
e. A certified copy of the order approving the bond of a trustee shall constitute conclusive evidence of the vesting in him of the title to the property of the bankrupt, and if recorded shall impart the same notice that a deed from the bankrupt to the trustee if recorded would have imparted had not bankruptcy proceedings intervened.
f. A certified copy of an order confirming or setting aside a composition, or granting or setting aside a discharge, not revoked, shall be evidence of the jurisdiction of the court, the regularity of the proceedings, and of the fact that the order was made.
g. A certified copy of an order confirming a composition shall constitute evidence of the revesting of the title of his property in the bankrupt, and if recorded shall impart the same notice that a deed from the trustee to the bankrupt if recorded would impart.
SEC. 22. REFERENCE OF CASES AFTER ADJUDICATION.-a. After a person has been adjudged a bankrupt the judge may cause the trustee to proceed with the administration of the estate, or refer it (1) generally to the referee or specially with only limited authority to act in the prem ises or to consider and report upon specified issues; or (2) to any referee within the territorial jurisdiction of the court, if the convenience of parties in interest will be served thereby, or for cause, or if the bankrupt does not do business, reside, or have his domicile in the district.
b. The judge may, at any time, for the convenience of parties or for cause, transfer a case from one referee to another.
SEC. 23. JURISDICTION OF UNITED STATES AND STATE COURTS.-a. The United States circuit courts shall have jurisdiction of all controversies at law and in equity, as distinguished from proceedings in bankruptcy, between trustees as such and adverse claimants concerning the property acquired or claimed by the trustees, in the same manner and to the same extent only as though bankruptcy proceedings had not been instituted and such controversies had been between the bankrupts and such adverse claimants.
b. Suits by the trustee shall only be brought or prosecuted in the courts where the bankrupt, whose estate is being administered by such trustee, might have brought or prosecuted them if proceedings in bankruptcy had not been instituted, unless by consent of the proposed defendant.
c. The United States circuit courts shall have concurrent jurisdiction with the courts of bankruptcy, within their respective territorial limits, of the offenses enumerated in this Act.
SEC. 24. JURISDICTION OF APPELLATE COURTS.-a. The Supreme Court of the United States, the circuit courts of appeals of the United States, and the supreme courts of the Territories, in vacation in chambers and during their respective terms, as now or as they may be hereafter held, are hereby invested with appellate jurisdiction of controversies arising in bankruptcy proceedings from the courts of bankruptcy from which they have appellate jurisdiction in other cases. The Supreme Court of the United States shall exercise a like jurisdiction from courts of bankruptcy not within any organized circuit of the United States and from the supreme court of the District of Columbia.
b. The several circuit courts of appeal shall have jurisdiction in equity, either interlocutory or final, to superintend and revise in matter of law the proceedings of the several inferior courts of bankruptcy within their jurisdiction. Such power shall be exercised on due notice and petition by any party aggrieved.
SEC. 25. APPEALS AND WRITS OF ERROR.-α. That appeals, as in equity cases, may be taken in bankruptcy proceedings from the courts of bankruptcy to the circuit court of appeals of the United States, and to the supreme court of the Territories, in the following cases, to wit, (1) from a judgment adjudging or refusing to adjudge the defendant a bankrupt; (2) from a judgment granting or denying a discharge; and (3) from a judgment allowing or rejecting a debt or claim of five hundred dollars or over. Such appeal shall be taken within ten days after the judgment appealed from has been rendered, and may be heard and determined by the appellate court in term or vacation, as the case may be.
b. From any final decision of a court of appeals, allowing or rejecting a claim under this Act, an appeal may be had under such rules and within such time as may be prescribed by the Supreme Court of the United States, in the following cases and no other:
1. Where the amount in controversy exceeds the sum of two thousand
dollars, and the question involved is one which might have been taken on appeal or writ of error from the highest court of a State to the Supreme Court of the United States; or
2. Where some Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States shall certify that in his opinion the determination of the question or questions involved in the allowance or rejection of such claim is essential to a uniform construction of this Act throughout the United States. c. Trustees shall not be required to give bond when they take appeals or sue out writs of error.
d. Controversies may be certified to the Supreme Court of the United States from other courts of the United States, and the former court may exercise jurisdiction thereof and issue writs of certiorari pursuant to the provisions of the United States laws now in force or such as may be hereafter enacted.
SEC. 26. ARBITRATION OF CONTROVERSIES.- -a. The trustee may, pursuant to the direction of the court, submit to arbitration any controversy arising in the settlement of the estate.
b. Three arbitrators shall be chosen by mutual consent, or one by the trustee, one by the other party to the controversy, and the third by the two so chosen, or if they fail to agree in five days after their appointment the court shall appoint the third arbitrator.
c. The written finding of the arbitrators, or a majority of them, as to the issues presented, may be filed in court and shall have like force and effect as the verdict of a jury.
SEC. 27. COMPROMISES.-a. The trustee may, with the approval of the court, compromise any controversy arising in the administration of the estate upon such terms as he may deem for the best interests of the estate.
SEC. 28. DESIGNATION OF NEWSPAPERS.-a. Courts of bankruptcy shall by order designate a newspaper published within their respective territorial districts, and in the county in which the bankrupt resides or the major part of his property is situated, in which notices required to be published by this Act and orders which the court may direct to be published shall be inserted. Any court may in a particular case, for the convenience of parties in interest, designate some additional newspaper in which notices and orders in such case shall be published.
SEC. 29. OFFENSES.—a. A person shall be punished, by imprisonment for a period not to exceed five years, upon conviction of the offense of having knowingly and fraudulently appropriated to his own use, embez zled, spent, or unlawfully transferred any property or secreted or destroyed any document belonging to a bankrupt estate which came into his charge as trustee.
b. A person shall be punished, by imprisonment for a period not to exceed two years, upon conviction of the offense of having knowingly and fraudulently (1) concealed while a bankrupt, or after his discharge, from his trustee any of the property belonging to his estate in bank
ruptcy; or (2) made a false oath or account in, or in relation to, any proceeding in bankruptcy; (3) presented under oath any false claim for proof against the estate of a bankrupt, or used any such claim in composition personally or by agent, proxy, or attorney, or as agent, proxy, or attorney; or (4) received any material amount of property from a bankrupt after the filing of the petition, with intent to defeat this Act; or (5) extorted or attempted to extort any money or property from any person as a consideration for acting or forbearing to act in bankruptcy proceedings.
c. A person shall be punished by fine, not to exceed five hundred dollars, and forfeit his office, and the same shall thereupon become vacant, upon conviction of the offense of having knowingly (1) acted as a referee in a case in which he is directly or indirectly interested; or (2) purchased, while a referee, directly or indirectly, any property of the estate in bankruptcy of which he is referee; or (3) refused, while a referee or trustee, to permit a reasonable opportunity for the inspection of the accounts relating to the affairs of, and the papers and records of, estates in his charge by parties in interest when directed by the court so to do.
d. A person shall not be prosecuted for any offense arising under this Act unless the indictment is found or the information is filed in court within one year after the commission of the offense.
SEC. 30. RULES, FORMS, AND ORDERS.-a. All necessary rules, forms, and orders as to procedure and for carrying this Act into force and effect shall be prescribed, and may be amended from time to time, by the Supreme Court of the United States.
SEC. 31. COMPUTATION OF TIME.-a. Whenever time is enumerated by days in this Act, or in any proceeding in bankruptcy, the number of days shall be computed by excluding the first and including the last, unless the last fall on a Sunday or holiday, in which event the day last included shall be the next day thereafter which is not a Sunday or a legal holiday.
SEC. 32. TRANSFER OF CASES.-a. In the event petitions are filed against the same person, or against different members of a partnership, in different courts of bankruptcy each of which has jurisdiction, the cases shall be transferred, by order of the courts relinquishing jurisdiction, to and be consolidated by the one of such courts which can proceed with the same for the greatest convenience of parties in interest.
OFFICERS, THEIR DUTIES AND COMPENSATION.
SEC. 33. CREATION OF TWO OFFICES.-a. The offices of referee and trustee are hereby created.
SEC. 34. APPOINTMENT, REMOVAL, AND DISTRICTS OF REFEREES. — α. Courts of bankruptcy shall, within the territorial limits of which they