The law relating to distress and execution is a much neglected area of study, despite the fact that bailiffs regularly appear in literary works and their activities are a constant feature of court rolls. This two-volume work aims to provide a detailed and comprehensive history of both the development of the law and the profession of bailiff.
The work chronicles the growth of enforcement law from Anglo-Saxon times, tracing the continuity in the common law and examining the intervention of statute. The seizure of goods by bailiffs was a familiar aspect of life in earlier times and this work sets their legal powers into their legal, social and economic context. Key themes are explored throughout both volumes: the protection given to certain essential goods, the efforts to regulate the conduct of bailiffs and the gradual shift of emphasis from promoting the rights of creditors to enhancing the protection of debtors.
Working within the field of social welfare, John Kruse has specialised in the law of enforcement for the last twenty years, and has written numerous books and articles on the subject. He has also acted as a consultant inter alia to the Ministry of Justice and the Council of Europe.