Definition of preempt
1 : to acquire (something, such as land) by preemption
2 : to seize upon to the exclusion of others : take for oneself the movement was then preempted by a lunatic fringe
3 : to replace with something considered to be of greater value or priority : take precedence over the program did not appear, having been preempted by a baseball game — Robert MacNeil
4 : to gain a commanding or preeminent place in
: to make a preemptive bid in bridge
preemptorplay \-ˈem(p)-tər\ noun
Examples of preempt in a Sentence
The contract preempts lawsuits by the company's clients.
The state law was preempted by a federal law.
The President's speech preempted regular programming.
Recent Examples of preempt from the Web
While Indiana has earned the dubious distinction of being the first state to preempt cities from enacting their own ‘
Researchers said anyone who experiences an infection may be able to preempt the encryption process by immediately turning off the computer and allowing only an experienced security professional to restart it.
Expressly preempt any related State laws to 5 prevent the testing or deployment of this technology.
The three-member panel of the 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals found that federal law that grants the Drug Enforcement Administration the subpoena power preempted Oregon state law, which requires a court order.
At first glance, these efforts are an attempt to address European concerns, in hopes of preempting legislation that would likely include punitive measures for companies that fail to adequately censor terrorist content.
In addition, Trump could preempt the Supreme Court fight by issuing a permanent travel ban — perhaps even adding new countries — after the review is completed.
If voters approve SoccerCity, its land-use designations would preempt the new plan.
Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley defended the actions of armed police, in an apparent effort to preempt criticism of officers who injured a bystander with their gunfire.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'preempt'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of preempt
back-formation from preemption
First Known Use: 1850See Words from the same year
PREEMPT Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of preempt for English Language Learners
: to prevent (something) from happening
: to take the place of (something)
: to be shown instead of (another television program)
Legal Definition of preempt
1a : to acquire (land) by preemption b : to seize upon to the exclusion of others : take for oneself a senior user of a trademark could not preempt use of the mark in remote geographical markets — Mesa Springs Enterprises v. Cutco Indus., 736 P.2d 1251 (1986)
2a : to replace or supersede (a law) by preemption such state laws are not preempted by the federal Energy Reorganization Act of 1974 — National Law Journal b : to preclude or bar (an action) by preemption federal airline deregulation does not preempt claims under state contract law — National Law Journal
Seen and Heard
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