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14 & 15 GEORGE 5, CHAPTER 38.
(a) Every dispute, relating to anything done or omitted by that person, society or branch (as the case may be) under this Act or any regulations made thereunder, between
(i) an approved society or a branch thereof, and an insured person who is a member of the society or branch or any person claiming through such a person;
(ii) an approved society or branch thereof, and any person who has ceased to be a member for the purposes of this Act of the society or branch, or any person claiming through such a person;
(iii) an approved society and any branch thereof;
(iv) any two or more branches of an approved society; and
(b) Every dispute between an approved society and any person as to whether that person is or was at any date a member of that society for the purposes of this Act,
shall be decided in accordance with the rules of the society, but any party to such dispute may, in such cases and in such manner as may be prescribed, appeal from the decision to the Minister.
(2) Every dispute between
(a) an insured person and an insurance committee;
(b) two or more approved societies;
(c) an approved society and an insurance committee;
relating to anything done or omitted by such person, society, or insurance committee under this Act or any regulations made thereunder, shall be decided in the prescribed manner by the Minister.
(3) The Minister may, subject to the provisions of this Act, authorise referees appointed by him to decide any appeal or dispute submitted to him under this section.
(4) Regulations may be made providing for the procedure on any such appeal or dispute, and any such regulations may apply any of the provisions of the Arbitration Act, 1889, but except so far as it may be so applied, that Act shall not apply to proceedings under this section, and any decision given by the Minister or a referee under this section shall be final and conclusive.
91. PROVISION AS TO EXERCISE OF JUDICIAL POWERS OF MINISTER.—In such matters of a judicial nature arising under this Act as may be prescribed, the powers and duties of the Minister shall be exercised by him through a special body or special bodies of persons constituted in such manner as may be prescribed.
92. POWERS OF INSPECTORS. (1) An inspector appointed by the Minister for the purposes of this Act (in this Act referred to as an inspector "), shall, for the purposes of the execution of this Act, have power to do all or any of the following things, namely:
(a) to enter at all reasonable times any premises or place, other than a private dwelling-house not being a workshop, where he has reasonable grounds for supposing that any employed contributors are employed;
(b) to make such examination and inquiry as may be necessary for ascertaining whether the provisions of this Act are complied with in any such premises or place;
(c) to examine, either alone or in the presence of any other person, as he thinks fit, with respect to any matters under this Act, every person whom he finds in any such premises or place, or whom he has reasonable cause to believe to be or to have been an employed contributor, and to require every such person to be so examined and to sign a declaration of the truth of the matters in respect of which he is so examined;
(d) to exercise such other powers as may be necessary for carrying this Act into effect.
NATIONAL HEALTH INSURANCE ACT, 1924.
(2) The occupier of any such premises or place and any other person employing any employed contributor, and the servants and agents of any such occupier or other person, and any employed contributor shall furnish to an inspector all such information and shall produce for inspection all such registers, books, cards and other documents as the inspector may reasonably require.
(3) Where any such premises or place are liable to be inspected by inspectors or other officers of, or are under the control of, some other Government department, the Minister may make arrangements with that other Government department for any of the powers and duties of inspectors under this section being carried out by inspectors or other officers of the other Government department, and where such an arrangement is made, those inspectors and officers shall have all the powers of an inspector under this section.
(4) An inspector shall be furnished with the prescribed certificate of his appointment, and on applying for admission to any premises for the purposes of this Act shall, if so required, produce the said certificate to the occupier.
(5) The Minister may empower an inspector to exercise in respect of any approved society or any branch of an approved society all or any of the powers given by section seventy-six of the Friendly Societies Act, 1896, to an inspector appointed thereunder : Provided that any complaint or report as to any such branch as aforesaid made by an inspector under this subsection shall be communicated to the central authority of the society.
(6) No one shall be required under this section to answer any question or give any evidence tending to incriminate himself.
Regulations and Orders.
93. REGULATIONS.—(1) Regulations may be made under this Act for any of the following purposes, that is to say :
(a) for any purpose for which regulations are expressly authorised to be made by any of the provisions of this Act;
(b) for prescribing anything which under this Act is to be prescribed; and (c) generally for carrying this Act into effect.
(2) All regulations made under this Act shall be laid before both Houses of Parliament as soon as may be after they are made, and shall have effect as if enacted in this Act, and if an address is presented to His Majesty by either House of Parliament within the next subsequent twenty-one days on which that House has sat next after any such regulation is laid before it, praying that the regulation may be annulled, His Majesty in Council may annul the regulation, and it shall thenceforth be void, but without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done thereunder.
(3) Any regulations made under any of the provisions of this Act specified in the Fifth Schedule to this Act may contain such incidental, supplemental and consequential provisions as appear necessary for modifying and adapting the provisions of this Act to the provisions of the regulations and otherwise for the purpose of the regulations.
94. RULES AS TO MAKING, &C., OF SPECIAL ORDERS, &c.—(1) Before the Minister makes any special order under this Act he shall publish, in such manner as he may think best adapted for informing persons affected, notice of the proposal to make the order, and of the place where copies of the draft order may be obtained, and of the time (which shall not be less than twenty-one days) within which any objection made with respect to the draft order by or on behalf of persons affected must be sent to him.
(2) Every objection must be in writing and state the draft order or portions of draft order objected to, the specific grounds of objections, and the omissions, additions or modifications desired.
(3) The Minister shall consider any objection made by or on behalf of any persons appearing to him to be affected which is sent to him within the required time, and he may, if he thinks fit, amend the draft order and cause the amended draft to be dealt with in like manner as an original draft.
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(4) When the Minister does not amend or withdraw any draft order to which any objection has been made, then (unless the objection either is withdrawn or appears to him to be frivolous) he shall, before making the order, direct an inquiry to be held in manner hereinafter provided.
(5) The Minister may appoint a competent and impartial person to hold an inquiry with regard to any draft order and to report to him thereon, and the following provisions shall have effect in relation to any such inquiry :
(a) The inquiry shall be held in public, and any objector and any other person who, in the opinion of the person holding the inquiry, is affected by the draft order, may appear at the inquiry either in person or by counsel, solicitor or agent;
(b) The witnesses on the inquiry may, if the person holding it thinks fit, be examined on oath ;
(c) Subject as aforesaid, the inquiry and all proceedings preliminary and incidental thereto shall be conducted in accordance with rules made by the Minister; (d) The fee to be paid to the person holding the inquiry shall be such as the Minister may direct and shall be deemed to be part of the expenses of the Minister in carrying this Act into effect.
(6) Before a special order comes into force, it shall be laid before each House of Parliament for a period of not less than thirty days during which that House is sitting, and, if either of those Houses before the expiration of those thirty days presents an address to His Majesty against the order or any part thereof, no further proceedings shall be taken thereon, without prejudice to the making of any new order.
95. POWER TO REVOKE AND VARY ORDERS.-Any order or special order made under this Act may be revoked, varied or amended by an order or special order made in like manner as the original order.
PART VI.-LEGAL AND MISCELLANEOUS.
Offences, Legal Proceedings, &c.
96. OFFENCES.-(1) If for the purpose of obtaining any benefit or payment or the crediting of a reserve value under this Act, either for himself or for any other person, any person knowingly makes any false statement or false representation, he shall be liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months with or without hard labour.
(a) any employer fails to pay any contributions which under this Act he is liable to pay; or
(b) any employer deducts or attempts to deduct from the wages or other remuneration of an employed contributor the whole or any part of the employer's contribution; or
(c) any employer, insured person or other person is guilty of any other contravention of or non-compliance with any of the requirements of this Act or the regulations made thereunder in respect of which no special penalty is provided;
he shall, for each offence, be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding ten pounds, and where the offence is failure or neglect on the part of the employer to pay any contributions, to pay to the Minister a sum equal to the amount of the contributions which he has so failed or neglected to pay, which sum when paid shall be treated as a payment in satisfaction of such contributions :
Provided that no person shall be liable to any penalty in respect of any matter if he has acted in conformity with any decision in respect thereto by the Minister. (3) If any person buys, sells or offers for sale, takes or gives in exchange, or pawns or takes in pawn, any insurance card, insurance book or used insurance stamp, he shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding twenty pounds, and in any proceedings under this subsection with respect to used insurance stamps, an
NATIONAL HEALTH INSURANCE ACT, 1924.
insurance stamp shall be deemed to have been used if it has been cancelled or defaced in any way whatever, and whether it has been actually used for the purpose of payment of a contribution or not.
(4) If any person wilfully delays or obstructs an inspector in the exercise of any power under the section of this Act relating to the powers of inspectors or fails to give such information or to produce such documents as provided in that section, or conceals or prevents or attempts to conceal or prevent any person from appearing before or being examined by an inspector, he shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding five pounds.
97. TIME FOR INSTITUTION OF PROCEEDINGS, POWER OF INSPECTOR TO PROSECUTE, &c.—(1) Notwithstanding any enactment prescribing the time within which proceedings may be brought before a court of summary jurisdiction
(a) proceedings against an employer under this Act for the offence of failing or neglecting to pay any contribution in respect of a person, or proceedings against any person for buying, selling, offering to sell, taking or giving in exchange, pawning or taking in pawn any insurance card, insurance book or used insurance stamp, may be brought at any time within one year from the date of the commission of the alleged offence; and
(b) proceedings for any offence under this Act may be brought either within the time prescribed by any such enactment as aforesaid or within three months from the date on which evidence sufficient in the opinion of the Minister to justify a prosecution for the offence comes to his knowledge, whichever is the longer, and for the purposes of this provision a certificate purporting to be signed by the Minister as to the date on which such evidence as aforesaid came to his knowledge shall be conclusive evidence thereof. (2) Where an employer has been convicted under this Act of the offence of failing or neglecting to pay any contribution in respect of a person, then, if notice of the intention so to do is served with the summons or warrant, evidence may be given of failure or neglect on the part of that employer to pay other contributions in respect of that person during the year preceding the date when the information for the offence was laid, and on proof of such failure or neglect the employer shall be liable to pay to the Minister a sum equal to the total amount of all the contributions which he is so proved to have failed or neglected to pay.
(3) An inspector or other officer appointed for the purposes of this Act shall, if authorised in that behalf by any special or general directions of the Minister, have power to take proceedings for any offence under this Act, and may, if authorised in that behalf by such directions as aforesaid, although not a counsel, solicitor or law agent, prosecute or conduct before a court of summary jurisdiction any proceedings for any such offence.
(4) In any summary proceedings under this Act whether for an offence or for the recovery of any sum as a civil debt the decision of the Minister on any question whether or not a person is or was an employed person or is or was the employer of an employed contributor within the meaning of this Act shall, unless an appeal against the decision is pending or the time for appealing against the decision has not expired, be conclusive for the purpose of those proceedings, and, if such a decision has not been obtained and the decision of the question is necessary for the determination of the proceedings, the question shall be referred to the Minister for decision in accordance with the provisions of this Act, and, where any such appeal is pending or the time for so appealing has not expired or any question has been so referred to the Minister, the court dealing with the case shall adjourn the proceedings until such time as a final decision on the question has been obtained.
98. CIVIL PROCEEDINGS BY EMPLOYEE AGAINST EMPLOYER FOR NON-COMPLIANCE WITH ACT.-(1) Where an employer has failed or neglected to pay any contribution which under this Act he is liable to pay in respect of any insured person in his employment (in this section referred to as " an employee "), or has failed or neglected to comply in relation to any employee with the requirements of any regulations relating to the payment and collection of contributions, and by reason thereof the
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employee or any person claiming through the employee has lost in whole or in part any benefits to which he would have been entitled under this Act, the employee or person so claiming shall be entitled to recover summarily from the employer as a civil debt a sum equal to the amount of any sickness, disablement or maternity benefit which he has lost as aforesaid, and a sum equal to the amount of any expenses which he has incurred by reason of not being entitled to medical benefit.
(2) If an employee who is a member of an approved society refuses or neglects to enforce any claim under the preceding provisions of this section, the society may take the necessary proceedings in the name and on behalf of the employee :
Provided that, if any society takes proceedings as aforesaid and fails in the proceedings, it shall be responsible for the costs of the proceedings as if it were claiming on its own account.
(3) If an employee is not a member of an approved society he or any person claiming through him shall in any proceedings under this section be entitled to recover from the employer the same amount as if the employee had been a member of an approved society.
(4) Proceedings may be taken under this section notwithstanding that proceedings have also been taken under any other enactment in respect of the same failure or neglect.
(5) Proceedings under this section may, notwithstanding any provision in any enactment, be brought at any time within one year after the date on which the employee, but for the failure or neglect of the employer, would have been entitled to receive the benefit which he has lost.
99. POWER TO TAKE EVIDENCE ON OATH AT STATUTORY INQUIRIES.-Where under any provision of this Act or any regulations made thereunder the Minister is required or authorised to hold, or to appoint any committee or person to hold, an inquiry, the witnesses shall, if the Minister thinks fit, or if any one of the parties so demands, be examined on oath, and the committee or person appointed to hold the inquiry shall have power to administer oaths for the purpose.
100. EXEMPTIONS FROM STAMP DUTY OF CERTAIN DOCUMENTS REQUIRED FOR PURPOSES OF ACT.-Stamp duty shall not be chargeable upon the following documents in connection with business under this Act, namely :—
(1) Draft, order or receipt given by or to an approved society or branch or insurance committee in respect of money payable in pursuance of this Act, or of the rules of the society or branch:
(2) Letter or power of attorney granted by any person as trustee for the transfer of any money of an approved society or branch or insurance committee, invested in his name in the public funds :
(3) Bond or other security given to, by or on account of an approved society or branch or by the treasurer or other official thereof:
(4) Appointment or revocation of appointment of agent, or other document required or authorised by or in pursuance of this Act, or by the rules of an approved society or branch:
(5) Agreement entered into between an approved society or branch and an insurance committee in relation to medical benefit.
101. PROVISIONS AS TO BIRTH, DEATH AND MARRIAGE CERTIFICATES.—(1) Where, for the purposes of this Act, the age of any person is required to be proved by the production of a certificate of birth, or the marriage of any person is required to be proved by the production of a certificate of marriage, any person shall, on presenting a written requisition in such form and containing such particulars as may be from time to time prescribed, and on payment in the case of a certificate of birth of a fee of sixpence and in the case of a certificate of marriage of a fee of one shilling, be entitled to obtain a certified copy of the entry of the birth or marriage, as the case may be, of the person in question in the register of births or the register of marriages,