withhold

verb
with·​hold | \ with-ˈhōld How to pronounce withhold (audio) , wit͟h-\
withheld\ with-​ˈheld How to pronounce withheld (audio) , wit͟h-​ \; withholding

Definition of withhold

transitive verb

1 : to hold back from action : check
2 archaic : to keep in custody
3 : to refrain from granting, giving, or allowing withhold permission
4 : to deduct (withholding tax) from income

intransitive verb

: forbear, refrain withhold from commenting

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Other Words from withhold

withholder noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for withhold

Synonyms

decline, deny, disallow, disapprove, negative, nix, refuse, reject, reprobate

Antonyms

allow, concede, grant, let, OK (or okay), permit

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Choose the Right Synonym for withhold

keep, retain, detain, withhold, reserve mean to hold in one's possession or under one's control. keep may suggest a holding securely in one's possession, custody, or control. keep this while I'm gone retain implies continued keeping, especially against threatened seizure or forced loss. managed to retain their dignity even in poverty detain suggests a delay in letting go. detained them for questioning withhold implies restraint in letting go or a refusal to let go. withheld information from the authorities reserve suggests a keeping in store for future use. reserve some of your energy for the last mile

Examples of withhold in a Sentence

She was accused of withholding evidence. She has $20 withheld from her paycheck every week.

Recent Examples on the Web

Even once deliveries started this year, the Air Force was withholding up to $28 million per plane until fixes were made to the tanker’s remote vision system. Jon Talton, The Seattle Times, "Boeing’s other problem: Much-needed Air Force tanker keeps hitting snafus," 12 Apr. 2019 In my conservative evangelical mind, the most loving thing to do is withhold money and offer a sandwich and directions to a Christian homeless ministry instead. Cindy Mallette, Vox, "In a year of hyperpartisanship, I did the unthinkable — I changed my mind about politics.," 20 Dec. 2018 The White House, citing executive privilege, is withholding more than 100,000 pages of records related to Kavanaugh from his time as a lawyer in the administration of former President George W. Bush. Recode Staff, Recode, "Recode Daily: Summer’s over! These are the big stories we’re following.," 4 Sep. 2018 Landlords, in turn, complained to the task force about not having money to make immediate repairs, while rent is withheld. Julia Terruso, Philly.com, "Task Force has 17 ideas for fixing Philly's eviction problem," 26 June 2018 Other arrests included a 2008 misdemeanor marijuana charge, for which adjudication was withheld, a 2008 misdemeanor loitering charge, which was dropped, and a 2012 misdemeanor domestic battery charge, which also was dropped. Carol Marbin Miller, miamiherald, "Felony drug defendant tells Miami judge he works caring for kids seized at border," 21 June 2018 Bradshaw denied Beauregard’s request for a contempt order against the city for withholding the records. Lewis Kamb, The Seattle Times, "Judge orders political consultant, city of Seattle to disclose polling results, other records related to council’s abrupt head-tax repeal," 18 Oct. 2018 The name of the service member who was killed will be withheld until 24 hours after next of kin is notified, in line with policy, the statement said. CBS News, "U.S. service member killed, 2 injured in Afghanistan "insider attack"," 7 July 2018 Faraday Future believes Evergrande wrongfully withheld this money after agreeing to advance it, and filed a grievance with an arbitration court in Hong Kong (where the Evergrande subsidiary that technically made the investment is headquartered). Sean O'kane, The Verge, "Federal court freezes Faraday Future CEO’s ownership stake, California mansions," 14 Dec. 2018

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for withhold

Middle English, from with from + holden to hold — more at with

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Learn More about withhold

Statistics for withhold

Last Updated

17 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for withhold

The first known use of withhold was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for withhold

withhold

verb

Financial Definition of withhold

What It Is

Withholding refers to withholding tax, which is an amount that employers withhold from an employee's paycheck and remit to local and federal taxing authorities on behalf of the employee.

How It Works

For example, let's say John Doe's salary is $24,000 a year. Though he makes $2,000 a month, he only brings home $1,800 because his employer takes $200 out of his paycheck and remits it to the state and the federal government on his behalf. The payments go toward John Doe's federal income tax, state income tax, unemployment, and Medicare liabilities.

The amount of withholding is influenced by what John Doe puts on his IRS Form W-4 ("Employee's Withholding Allowance Certificate"), which he provides to the employer and on which he indicates how many dependents he has and his marital status, among other things. A copy goes directly to the IRS. Generally, the more allowances the employee claims on a Form W-4, the lower the withholding tax.

Withholding tax applies to income earned through wages, pensions, bonuses, commissions, and gambling winnings. Dividends and capital gains, for example, are not subject to withholding tax. Self-employed people generally don't pay withholding taxes; they typically make quarterly estimated payments instead.

Why It Matters

Withholding tax prevents people from being blindsided by huge tax bills on April 15. By having their employers remit a little out of each paycheck, federal and local governments also ensure steady cash flow throughout the year and reduce the risk that taxpayers will be unable to pay their taxes. A person's tax liability may still be more or less than what he or she pays in withholding taxes in a year. In those cases, the taxpayer may have to pay more money on April 15 or may receive a tax refund. It is important to note that accuracy in payroll is crucial; any mistakes in remitting withholding tax are generally the taxpayer's problem even if they are the employer's fault.

Source: Investing Answers

withhold

verb

English Language Learners Definition of withhold

: to hold (something) back
: to refuse to provide (something)
US : to take out (an amount of money for taxes) from someone's income

withhold

verb
with·​hold | \ with-ˈhōld How to pronounce withhold (audio) , wit͟h-\
withheld\ -​ˈheld \; withholding

Kids Definition of withhold

: to refuse to give, grant, or allow The teacher withheld permission.

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More from Merriam-Webster on withhold

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with withhold

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for withhold

Spanish Central: Translation of withhold

Nglish: Translation of withhold for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of withhold for Arabic Speakers

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