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And whereas landlords are often great sufferers by tenants running away in arrear, and not only suffering the demised premisses to lie uncultivated without any distress thereon, whereby their landlords or lessors might be satisfied for the rent-arrear, but also refusing to deliver up the possession of the demised premisses, whereby the landlords are put to the expence and delay of recovering in ejectment: from and after the said twenty fourth day of June one thousand seven hundred and thirty eight, if any tenant holding any lands, tenements, or hereditaments at a rack-rent, or where the rent reserved shall be full three fourths of the yearly value of the demised premisses, who shall be in arrear for one year’s rent, shall desert the demised premisses and leave the same uncultivated or unoccupied, so as no sufficient distress can be had to countervail the arrears of rent, it shall and may be lawful to and for two or more justices of the peace of the county, riding, division, or place (having no interest in the demised premisses), at the request of the lessor or landlord, lessors or landlords, or his, her, or their bailiff or receiver, to go upon and view the same, and to affix or cause to be affixed on the most notorious part of the premisses, notice in writing what day (at the distance of fourteen days at least) they will return to take a second view thereof; and if upon such second view the tenant, or some person on his or her behalf, shall not appear and pay the rent in arrear, or there shall not be sufficient distress upon the premisses, then the said justices may put the landlord or landlords, lessor or lessors into the possession of the said demised premisses, and the lease thereof to such tenant, as to any demise therein contained only, shall from thenceforth become void.
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