Elizabeth Bennett suggests that the number of actions against defaulters on debts involving Londoners, which were registered under Statute Staple, fell as the bullion supply fell and as overseas trade declined between 1410 and 1450.
The remedy was to register the debt or loan under Statute Merchant or Statute Staple. Under the statute of Acton Burnel of 1283, the debtor practically signed a judgment against himself in the event of defaulting on payment, and these provisions were strengthened by the Statute de Mercatoribus in 1285.
Statute Merchant and Statute Staple bonds had the strength of bills of exchange within England and should have offered an attractive alternative to the less formal arrangements already described.
In about 1357 a debt of 80 [pounds sterling] was registered under Statute Staple in York, to be recovered from property in Thirsk and York.
Simon Grimsby of Hull, for instance, owned land in Hull worth 40 marks per year, and he borrowed 40 marks from John Iwardby against the land under Statute Staple. But Grimsby over-reached himself, and enfeoffed (legally handed over to) a third party with the land.
Statute Staple Certificates were writs issued by the chancellor on behalf of creditors trying to recover a debt registered under Statute Staple.
(52) There were about 6,000 cases brought under Statute Staple from 1390 to 1450; Bennett, "Debt and Credit in the Urban Economy," 153.