Law Dictionary

abandonment

noun aban·don·ment

Legal Definition of abandonment

  1. 1 :  the act of abandoning property or a right: as a :  relinquishment by an inventor of the right to enforce a patent — see also dedication b :  an author's relinquishment to the public domain of his or her copyrighted work c :  relinquishment of a trademark established by a failure to use the trademark and an intention never to resume use d :  the act of an insured in surrendering all rights to damaged or lost property to an insurer as a total loss — compare salvage 2b e :  relinquishment by a trustee in bankruptcy of interest in property in the bankruptcy estate often for a nominal sum

  2. 2 :  the act of abandoning a person: as a :  failure to have contact with a spouse that is intended to create a permanent separation b :  failure to communicate with or provide financial support for one's child over a period of time that shows a purpose to forgo parental duties and rights

  3. 3 :  the act of abandoning a contract

  4. 4a :  the act of abandoning a course of action (as a crime) b :  the affirmative defense (as recognized under the Model Penal Code) of voluntary withdrawal from the commission of a crime resulting from the actor's change of heart and not from intervening circumstances



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