deed poll

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deed poll

a deed in one part and signed only by the grantor. The ‘poll’ part refers to the fact that originally the edges of the deed were shaven, or ‘polled’. The phrase is seen mostly in the expression ‘change one's name by deed poll’, which refers to a declaration needed in England and Wales for a person to change his or her name.

DEED POLL, contracts. A deed made by one party only is not indented, but polled or shaved quite even, and is, for this reason, called a deed poll, or single deed. Co. Litt. 299, a.
     2. A deed poll is not, strictly speaking, an agreement between two persons; but a declaration of some one particular person, respecting an agreement made by him with some other person. For example, a feoffment from A to B by deed poll, is not an agreement between A and B, but rather a declaration by A addressed to all mankind, informing them that he thereby gives and enfeoffs B of certain land therein described.
     3. It was formerly called charta de una parte, and, usually began with these words, Sciant praesentes et futuri quod ego A, &c.; and now begins, "Know all men by these presents, that I, A B, have given, granted, and enfeoffed, and by these presents do give, grant and enfeoff," &c. Cruise, Real Prop. tit. 32, c. 1, s. 23.