noun \di-ˈliŋ-kwən-sē, -ˈlin-\

: crimes or other morally wrong acts : illegal or immoral behavior especially by young people

: the condition of someone who owes money and is not making payments at the required or expected time

plural de·lin·quen·cies

Full Definition of DELINQUENCY

a :  a delinquent act
b :  conduct that is out of accord with accepted behavior or the law; especially :  juvenile delinquency
:  a debt on which payment is overdue


  1. They tried to steer him away from delinquency by giving him a job in their store.
  2. She's been charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
  3. a series of minor delinquencies
  4. a high rate of delinquency

First Known Use of DELINQUENCY


Other Legal Terms

actionable, alienable, carceral, chattel, complicity, decedent, larceny, malfeasance, modus operandi


noun \di-ˈliŋ-kwən-sē, -ˈlin-\   (Medical Dictionary)
plural de·lin·quen·cies

Medical Definition of DELINQUENCY

: conduct that is out of accord with accepted behavior or the law; especially : juvenile delinquency


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Criminal behaviour carried out by a juvenile. Young males make up the bulk of the delinquent population (about 80% in the U.S.) in all countries in which the behaviour is reported. Theories regarding delinquency's causes focus on the social and economic characteristics of the offender's family, the values communicated by the parents, and the nature of youth and criminal subcultures, including gangs. In general, both “push” and “pull” factors are involved. Most delinquents apparently do not continue criminal behaviour into their adult lives but rather adjust to societal standards. The most common punishment for delinquent offenders is probation, whereby the delinquent is given a suspended sentence and in return must live by a prescribed set of rules under the supervision of a probation officer. See also criminology; penology.


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