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a legally authorized postponement of the fulfilment of an obligation



a postponement of obligations established by a government for a fixed period or until the end of certain forces majeures, for example, during war or natural disaster. A general moratorium applies to all obligations; other types pertain to only certain varieties of obligation or to certain categories of debtors.

In the USSR a moratorium may be established by a decree of the Council of Ministers of the USSR or of a Union republic. Soviet civil law considers a moratorium grounds for suspending the period of limitation on civil suits (Civil Code of the RSFSR, art. 85). A general moratorium has never been declared in the USSR; during the Great Patriotic War of 1941–45, a moratorium was declared on certain obligations only.

In capitalist countries, the government resorts to moratoriums during periods of economic crisis. As a rule, such moratoriums apply to bank transactions on foreign loans. A special form of moratorium is the bank moratorium, which closes credit institutions for a certain time by order of the government. Use of the moratorium is characteristic of the present-day currency and financial crisis. For example, the devaluation of the American dollar in 1971–73 led to numerous closings of the major currency exchanges in Western Europe and Japan.

References in periodicals archive ?
Con Edison imposed a moratorium on new gas service in southern Westchester last month, blaming an inability to find a new pipeline supply.
In a statement Wednesday, the GSIS said the moratorium will be effective for six months, starting March until August.
The petition, which was circulated by the Land Stewardship Project (LSP) since mid-January, calls for a two-year moratorium on frac sand mining in southeastern Minnesota, as well as tougher statewide standards for the industry.
Others have chosen to forgo a moratorium, sometimes out of concern that a ban could put them at an economic disadvantage to neighboring communities that would be welcoming to such new businesses.
Attorney General Martha Coakley ruled this year that towns could not ban dispensaries outright but may impose moratoriums or zoning restrictions.
While Bank of America Corp said that it would not resume foreclosure proceedings until the eligibility details of Obama's Homeowner Affordability and Stability Plan are released, Wells Fargo said it has extended its foreclosure moratorium to March 13.
After making sure that I understood the meaning of moratorium, I was deeply disappointed with the continued activity concerning the blessing of same sex unions, both from bishops and from those in particular dioceses in the Anglican Church of Canada.
Supreme Court disagreed with the Tahoe property owners, ruling 6-3 this spring that a development moratorium does not automatically qualify as a "taking" requiring government compensation for the property owners.
Equal Justice USA got this round of the moratorium movement started in 1997 when the country broke its 40-year-old record for most executions in a year.
The ITFA provides a moratorium, for the period beginning Oct.