distrain(redirected from distrains)
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To seize the property of an individual and retain it until an obligation is performed. The taking of the goods and chattels of a tenant by a landlord in order to satisfy an unpaid debt.
Distrain is a comprehensive term that may be used in reference to any detention of Personal Property, lawful or unlawful.
distrainto seize (personal property) by way of DISTRESS.
TO DISTRAIN. To take an keep any personal chattel in custody, as a distress. (q.v.)