Definition of dispute noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

BrE BrE//dɪˈspjuːt//
; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈspjuːt//
; BrE BrE//ˈdɪspjuːt//
; NAmE NAmE//ˈdɪspjuːt//
[countable, uncountable] an argument or a disagreement between two people, groups or countries; discussion about a subject where there is disagreement dispute (between A and B) a dispute between the two countries about the border dispute (over/about something) the latest dispute over fishing rights industrial/pay disputes The union is in dispute with management over working hours. The cause of the accident was still in dispute (= being argued about). The matter was settled beyond dispute by the court judgment (= it could no longer be argued about). His theories are open to dispute (= can be disagreed with).
Word OriginMiddle English: via Old French from Latin disputare ‘to estimate’ (in late Latin ‘to dispute’), from dis- ‘apart’ + putare ‘reckon’.Extra examples He proposed a negotiated settlement of the outstanding disputes between the two countries. His theories are open to dispute. No one could remember exactly how the dispute had arisen. Police have difficulties in dealing with domestic disputes. The actual sum of compensation due is still in dispute. The employees have been in dispute with management for three weeks. The exact relationship between the two languages is a matter of dispute among scholars. The incident sparked off a major dispute between the two countries. The matter was settled beyond dispute by the court judgment. The purpose of industrial tribunals is to adjudicate disputes between employers and employees. The simmering dispute erupted in public when the two men came to blows at the party conference. There is considerable dispute over the precise definition of ‘social class’ as a term. There is no dispute as to the facts. There were lengthy internal disputes between the two wings of the party. They became embroiled in a dispute with their competitors. a jurisdictional dispute between the Army and the CIA a long-standing dispute between the families over ownership of the land. disputes concerning environmental protection one of the many factors that led to the dispute the matters under dispute to minimize the scope for dispute over the meaning of the terms employed His job is to settle pay disputes. She was asked to report on the latest dispute over fishing rights. The cause of the accident was still in dispute.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: dispute

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