American English

Definition of obligation noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[uncountable] obligation (to do something) the state of being forced to do something because it is your duty, or because of a law, etc. You are under no obligation to buy anything. She did not feel under any obligation to tell him the truth. I don't want people coming to see me out of a sense of obligation. We will send you an estimate for the work without obligation (= you do not have to accept it).
  2. 2[countable] something that you must do because you have promised, because of a law, etc. synonym commitment to fulfill your legal/professional/financial obligations They reminded him of his contractual obligations. obligation to do something We have a moral obligation to protect the environment.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: obligation