PREMIUM LEGAL RESOURCES
ASK A LAWYER
WRIT OF DEBT
A writ which lies where the party claims the recovery of a debt, i. e. a liquidated or certain sum of money alleged to be due to him. This is debt in the debet, which is the principal and only common form. There is another species mentioned in the books, called the debt in the detinet, which lies for the specific recovery of goods, under a contract to deliver them.
WRIT OF DETINUE
A writ which lies where a party claims the specific recovery of goods and chattels, or deeds and writings detained from him. This is seldom used: trover is the more frequent remedy, in cases where it may be brought.
WRIT OF DOWER
A writ which lies for a widow ciaiming the specific recovery of her dower, no part having been yet assigned to her. It is usually called a writ of dower unde nihil habet.
There is another species, called a writ of right of dower, which applies to the particular case where the widow has received a part of her dower from the tenant himself, and of land lying in the same town in which she claims the residue. This latter writ is seldom used in practice.