non·​en·​force·​ment ˌnän-in-ˈfȯr-smənt How to pronounce nonenforcement (audio)
: failure or refusal to enforce or carry out something (such as a law or order) : lack of enforcement
their nonenforcement of the new rule

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web And some states significantly limit the level of nonenforcement that lower jurisdictions can exercise, Politico reports. Sarah Matusek, The Christian Science Monitor, 18 Aug. 2022 Some states forbid blanket nonenforcement by local prosecutors. Zachary Price, WSJ, 28 Apr. 2022 The vogue for nonenforcement has swept cities across the country, while opponents have largely responded with abstract critiques. Zachary Price, WSJ, 28 Apr. 2022 The nonenforcement of laws against rioting and looting has become common in big cities. Victor Davis Hanson, National Review, 13 Aug. 2020 More than 90% of counties in the commonwealth have passed resolutions signaling defiance and nonenforcement of potential gun control laws. John Gage, Washington Examiner, 14 Jan. 2020 The ruling was the second time a federal judge has rebuffed the Trump administration’s nonenforcement of the methane rule. Washington Post, 6 Mar. 2018 Legislative reform is the long-term answer, but administrative nonenforcement seems like the only readily available option. Jim Newell, Slate Magazine, 27 Jan. 2017 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1848, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of nonenforcement was in 1848

Dictionary Entries Near nonenforcement

Cite this Entry

“Nonenforcement.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Mar. 2023.

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