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n. a person having in his/her possession (holding) money or property in which he/she has no interest, right or title, awaiting the outcome of a dispute between two or more claimants to the money or property. The stakeholder has a duty to deliver to the owner or owners the money or assets once the right to legal possession is established by judgment or agreement. (See: escrow)

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.

STAKEHOLDER, contracts. A third person, chosen by two or more persons, to keep in deposit property, the right or possession of which is contested between them and to be delivered to the one who shall establish his right to it. Thus each of them is considered as depositing the whole thing. This distinguishes this contract from that which takes place when two or more tenants in common deposit a thing with a bailee. Domat, Lois Civ. liv. 1, t. 7, s. 4; 1 Vern. R. 44, n. 1.
     2. A person having in his hands money or other property claimed by several others, is considered in equity as a stakeholder. 1 Vern. R. 144.
     3. The duties of a stakeholder are to deliver the thing holden by him to the person entitled to it on demand. It is frequently questionable who is entitled to it. In case of an unlawful wager, although be may be justified for delivering the thing to the winner, by the express or implied consent of the loser; 8, John. 147; yet if before the event has happened he has been required by either party to give up the thing deposited with him by such party, he is bound so to deliver it; 3 Taunt. 377; 4 Taunt. 492; or if, after the event has happened, the losing party give notice to the stakeholder not to pay the winner, a payment made to him afterwards will be made in his own wrong, and the party who deposited the money or thing may recover it from the stakeholder. 16 S. & R. 147; 7 T. R. 536; 8 T. R. 575; 4 Taunt. 474; 2 Marsh. 542. See 3 Penna. R. 468; 4 John. 426; 5 Wend. 250; 2 P. A. Browne, 182; 1 Bailey, 486, 503. See Wagers.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
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