mandatory

adjective
man·​da·​to·​ry | \ ˈman-də-ˌtȯr-ē How to pronounce mandatory (audio) \

Definition of mandatory

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : required by a law or rule : obligatory the mandatory retirement age
2 : of, by, relating to, or holding a League of Nations mandate

mandatory

noun
plural mandatories

Definition of mandatory (Entry 2 of 2)

: one given a mandate especially : a nation holding a mandate from the League of Nations

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Other Words from mandatory

Adjective

mandatorily \ ˈman-​də-​ˌtȯr-​ə-​lē How to pronounce mandatorily (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for mandatory

Synonyms: Adjective

compulsory, forced, imperative, incumbent, involuntary, necessary, nonelective, obligatory, peremptory, required

Antonyms: Adjective

elective, optional, voluntary

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Did You Know?

Something mandatory is the result of a mandate or order, which usually comes in the form of a law, rule, or regulation. Today there seem to be a lot of these mandates, so mandatory seat belts, mandatory inspections for industries, and mandatory prison sentences for violent crimes are regularly in the news. But mandatory retirement at age 65, which used to be common, is now illegal in most cases.

Examples of mandatory in a Sentence

Adjective

Parents object to the mandatory nature of the shots—and the fact that their child's access to education hinges on compliance with the immunization regulations. — Alice Park, Time, 2 June 2008 In a move some are calling a "backdoor draft," the Pentagon has announced it will issue mandatory recalls to more than 5,600 Army troops for deployment to Iraq and Afghanistan. — Nathaniel Frank, Washington Post, 12 July 2004 At the same time, the 1987 repeal of the Fairness Doctrine, which ended mandatory balanced coverage of politics, gave birth to talk radio, and the television universe splintered between the old networks and the new culture of cable gladiators in which opinion was more entertaining than information and cheaper to produce as well. — Nancy Gibbs, Time, 27 Sept. 2004 the tests are mandatory for all students wishing to graduate
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The former Auburn standout advanced as a wide receiver between rookie minicamp and mandatory minicamp. Mark Inabinett | Minabinett@al.com, al.com, "Oakland Raiders kicker Daniel Carlson: ‘You grow a lot in adversity’," 14 June 2019 Cantrell stressed the Smoothie King Center is reserved for mandatory evacuations. nola.com, "State, city officials urge residents to 'get a game plan’ this hurricane season," 13 June 2019 Winds and temperatures in the 90s drove the Sand fire Saturday afternoon, prompting the mandatory evacuation of 125 residents along County Road 41. Alexa Díaz, latimes.com, "Fire weather arrives in L.A. as firefighters battle blaze in Yolo County," 10 June 2019 There was a mandatory evacuation of campers and users at Bartlett Lake. CBS News, "Human-started wildfire in Arizona spreads to over 7,000 acres," 8 June 2019 Houses on the east side of U.S. 31 from County Road 100 S to Division Road are under a mandatory evacuation due to a smoky cloud. Indianapolis Star, "Crash, acid spill forces evacuations in Tipton County," 16 Oct. 2018 What was graciously tolerated in a minority suddenly becomes mandatory for the majority. Charlotte Allen, WSJ, "Religious Freedom and the Burqa," 23 Aug. 2018 NBC affiliate News 4 Tucson reported that Thomas was stopped by a Pima County Sheriff’s Department deputy at 9:46 p.m. on Thursday, May 2, due to a mandatory insurance suspension on a vehicle. Lucy Diavolo, Teen Vogue, "Arizona Students Marched for Classmate Thomas Torres-Maytorena, Who's Facing Deportation Court on Graduation Day," 7 May 2019 The beloved K-pop group's eldest, 29-year-old Xiumin will be the first in EXO to take part in South Korea's mandatory military service. Devon Abelman, Allure, "Xiumin of EXO Just Shaved Off All His Hair for His Impending Military Enlistment," 6 May 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

This system took millions of dollars to develop and is often pointed to as a working example of upload filters by rights holders and lawmakers who wish to make such technology mandatory for every website which hosts user content online. Ulrich Kaiser, Ars Technica, "Google: Sorry professor, old Beethoven recordings on YouTube are copyrighted," 3 Sep. 2018 Separately, an Iceland law that took effect Jan. 1 makes equal pay for equal work mandatory in the northern European nation, regardless of gender, ethnicity, sexuality or nationality. Kevin Mccoy, USA TODAY, "Citi to boost pay for women and minorities, closing gaps in the U.S., UK, and Germany," 15 Jan. 2018 Buying such insurance is quasi-mandatory, since banks won’t issue mortgages unless a property is covered. Emanuel Ubert, Washington Post, "The strange story of how Florida’s lawmakers subsidized hurricane insurance," 13 Sep. 2017 In August, Medicare officials proposed canceling mandatory bundled payments for certain surgeries and scaling back the program for knee and hip replacements. Chad Terhune, Kaiser Health News, "Why One California County Went Surgery Shopping," 1 Sep. 2017 Tests to check that older vehicles in Washington’s most-populous areas comply with emission regulations: Mandatory. Jessica Lee, The Seattle Times, "With newer, cleaner cars on the road, is Washington’s vehicle emission test still necessary?," 31 July 2017 But some mandatories come with parole In some cases, a minimum sentence will still be imposed, but the convict would be newly eligible for parole. Julia O'donoghue, NOLA.com, "Here's how Louisiana sentencing laws are changing under criminal justice reform," 26 June 2017 Like Obamacare, which essentially makes health care mandatory for everyone, insurance coverage is compulsory in Germany. Patrick May, The Mercury News, "How countries around the world do single-payer health care," 2 June 2017 But some mandatories come with parole In some cases, a minimum sentence will still be imposed, but the convict would be newly eligible for parole. Julia O'donoghue, NOLA.com, "Here's how Louisiana sentencing laws are changing under criminal justice reform," 26 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'mandatory.' 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 mandatory

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1661, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for mandatory

Adjective

see mandate entry 1

Noun

see mandate entry 1

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Learn More about mandatory

Dictionary Entries near mandatory

mandated

mandatee

mandator

mandatory

mandatum

man-day

Mandaya

Statistics for mandatory

Last Updated

18 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for mandatory

The first known use of mandatory was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for mandatory

mandatory

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of mandatory

: required by a law or rule

mandatory

adjective
man·​da·​tory | \ ˈman-də-ˌtȯr-ē How to pronounce mandatory (audio) \

Kids Definition of mandatory

: required by law or by a command Student attendance is mandatory.

mandatory

adjective
man·​da·​to·​ry | \ ˈman-də-ˌtȯr-ē How to pronounce mandatory (audio) \

Legal Definition of mandatory

: containing or constituting a command : being obligatory

Other Words from mandatory

mandatorily \ -​ˌtȯr-​i-​lē How to pronounce mandatorily (audio) \ adverb

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Comments on mandatory

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