Distraint on a debtor's corn was forbidden by the Code; not only must the creditor give it back, but his illegal action forfeited his claim altogether.
An unwarranted seizure for debt was fined, as was the distraint of a working ox.
Failure to pay them did not lead to confiscation, but they were collected by suit and distraint like any debt.
1 In several of the writs for distraint of knighthood from Henry III.
Moreover, after the knight's liability to personal service in war had been modified in the 12th century by the scutage system, it became necessary in the first quarter of the r3th to compel landowners to take up the knighthood which in theory they should have coveted as an honour - a compulsion which was soon systematically enforced (Distraint of Knighthood, 1278), and became a recognized source of royal income.
3 This rule, however, had often been broken before; even the romances of chivalry speak not infrequently of the knighting of serfs or jongleurs; 4 and other causes besides distraint of knighthood tended to level the old distinctions.
The method of recovering rent charge under the Commutation Acts was distraint where the rent charge is in arrear for twentyone days after the half-yearly days of payment, and entry and possession with power of letting if it is in arrear for forty days, and arrears for two years are so recoverable: this power of distress and entry extends to all lands occupied by the occupier of the land whose tithe is in arrear as owner or under the same landlord; but no action lies against the owner or occupier of the land personally.
If he failed to pay his rent, however excessive, his property was rendered liable to distraint and his person to imprisonment.
At one assembly there about a century before Christ, a uniform law of distraint for the whole of Ireland was adopted on the motion of Sen, son of Aige.
For this amount the guilty person, and in his default his kindred, became legally debtor, and the injured person or family became entitled to recover the amount like a civil debt by distraint, if not paid voluntarily.
The Code of 1650 (Connecticut) taxed all persons for its support, provided for the collection of church taxes, if necessary, by civil distraint, and forbade the formation of new churches without the consent of the general court.