for·​bear·​ance | \ fȯr-ˈber-ən(t)s How to pronounce forbearance (audio) , fər- \

Definition of forbearance

1 : a refraining from the enforcement of something (such as a debt, right, or obligation) that is due The policy provides a means of forbearance for borrowers meeting certain criteria.
2 : the act of forbearing : patience He appreciated his wife's forbearances.
3 : the quality of being forbearing : leniency known … for her forbearance with her incorrigible husband— Willa Cather

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Synonyms & Antonyms for forbearance



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Examples of forbearance in a Sentence

He showed great forbearance in his dealings with them. we thank you for your forbearance while we attend to the technical difficulties interrupting the TV program
Recent Examples on the Web Already almost 4 million homeowners were on forbearance plans as of May 3, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. Susan Tompor, Detroit Free Press, "How to hit pause button on mortgage payments during the coronavirus crisis," 15 May 2020 In fact, according to CNBC, more than seven percent of all active mortgages in the U.S. are now taking advantage of forbearance plans (as of April 30th). Nathan Bachrach And Amy Wagner,, "Simply Money: The best places to keep an emergency fund right now," 13 May 2020 On Thursday, attorney Tom LaLanne showed up to City Hall on behalf of a client who had been in negotiation with the lender on a forbearance agreement. J.k. Dineen,, "Foreclosure sales continue in Bay Area during coronavirus crisis," 25 Apr. 2020 Democrats are under pressure from liberal groups to add rent and mortgage forbearance and more direct cash payments and expanded food stamp benefits. Susan Ferrechio, Washington Examiner, "Republicans and Democrats set to clash on more coronavirus spending," 23 Apr. 2020 The legislation also allows a borrower with a multifamily loan backed by the government -- potentially your landlord -- to be eligible for up to three months of forbearance. Anna Bahney, CNN, "Rent. Student loans. Utility bills. How to get help if you can't pay your bills," 16 Apr. 2020 The Federal Housing Finance Agency — Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae’s regulator — recognized the liquidity risk and moved this week to allow the enterprises to purchase mortgages which recently entered forbearance. Washington Post, "Mortgage rates show little change as the federal government addresses the industry’s liquidity concerns," 23 Apr. 2020 Servicers are still responsible for making payments if borrowers are granted a forbearance — temporary suspension of their mortgage payments. Jc Reindl, Detroit Free Press, "Cash crunch fears ease for Detroit-based Quicken Loans, other mortgage servicers," 22 Apr. 2020 Fratantoni expects that number to keep rising, citing an additional 1.8% of homeowners who called banks to request forbearance last week. Irina Ivanova, CBS News, "3 million Americans are not making mortgage payments right now," 20 Apr. 2020

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

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First Known Use of forbearance

1576, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for forbearance

see forbear entry 1

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Time Traveler for forbearance

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The first known use of forbearance was in 1576

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Statistics for forbearance

Last Updated

19 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Forbearance.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for forbearance


How to pronounce forbearance (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of forbearance

formal : the quality of someone who is patient and able to deal with a difficult person or situation without becoming angry


variants: also forebearance \ fȯr-​ˈbar-​əns \

Legal Definition of forbearance

: a refraining from the enforcement of something (as a debt, right, or obligation) that is due

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Spanish Central: Translation of forbearance

Nglish: Translation of forbearance for Spanish Speakers

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