com·​pli·​ance | \ kəm-ˈplī-ən(t)s How to pronounce compliance (audio) \

Definition of compliance

1a : the act or process of complying to a desire, demand, proposal, or regimen or to coercion Patient compliance in completing the treatment regimens was excellent.— Georgia A. Chrousos
b : conformity in fulfilling official requirements His actions were in compliance with state law.
2 : a disposition to yield to others
3 : the ability of an object to yield elastically when a force is applied : flexibility

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of compliance in a Sentence

She was rewarded for her compliance. There has been a low rate of compliance with the new law.
Recent Examples on the Web Indianapolis Department of Public Works director Dan Parker said that those areas were chosen by looking at factors such as density, pedestrian traffic, ADA compliance, public transit and the ability for city officials to manage traffic. Justin L. Mack, The Indianapolis Star, "How Indianapolis will change to allow more outdoor dining amid coronavirus," 19 May 2020 But while Londoners were already braced for tougher action, Johnson instead opted to clamp down on socializing across the entire country, where compliance with his request has been patchy, officials said. Alex Morales,, "Johnson Shuts U.K.’s Pubs, Restaurants and Gyms to Fight Virus," 10 May 2020 Kabul and most other cities are in lockdown, but compliance has not been widespread., "Cycle power: Bikes emerge as a post-lockdown commuter option," 4 May 2020 Hamborg argues that public health compliance is necessary. Los Angeles Times, "Protesters rally in Orange County to denounce Newsom’s beach closure," 2 May 2020 Strict compliance with our comprehensive COVID-19 action plan and social distancing guidelines is our responsible duty to effectively contain the virus. Jason Frakes, The Courier-Journal, "Gov. Andy Beshear says Churchill Downs can reopen on May 11; first race date TBA," 29 Apr. 2020 So far, the health ministry has approved lockdown proposals from 10 cities, but compliance is low. Dyna Rochmyaningsih, Science | AAAS, "'Open the doors for us.' Indonesian scientists say government snubs offers to help fight coronavirus," 18 Apr. 2020 But compliance has been spotty, according to nursing home employees across the country. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Wisconsin officials won't say which nursing homes have been infected by coronavirus. For families, 'the anxiety is enormous.'," 15 Apr. 2020 But advocates for people recovering from addiction say compliance with the new guidelines has been inconsistent. Alison Insinger, STAT, "Methadone clinic lines and packed waiting rooms leave clients vulnerable to the coronavirus," 9 Apr. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'compliance.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of compliance

circa 1630, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for compliance

see comply

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about compliance

Time Traveler for compliance

Time Traveler

The first known use of compliance was circa 1630

See more words from the same year

Statistics for compliance

Last Updated

23 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Compliance.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 May. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for compliance


How to pronounce compliance (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of compliance

formal : the act or process of doing what you have been asked or ordered to do : the act or process of complying


com·​pli·​ance | \ kəm-ˈplī-ən(t)s How to pronounce compliance (audio) \

Medical Definition of compliance

1 : the ability or process of yielding to changes in pressure without disruption of structure or function a study of pulmonary compliance the tone of colonic muscle as judged by compliance of the gut wall— S. C. Truelove
2 : the process of complying with a regimen of treatment simplified drug regimens may encourage better compliance


com·​pli·​ance | \ kəm-ˈplī-əns How to pronounce compliance (audio) \

Legal Definition of compliance

1 : an act or process of complying with a demand or recommendation
2 : observance of official requirements

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on compliance

What made you want to look up compliance? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Obscure Shapes

  • a pile of three dimensional shapes in green
  • Something that is ooid is shaped like:
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!