Definition of “lapse” - English Dictionary

“lapse” in American English

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lapsenoun

us /læps/

lapse noun (FAILURE)

[ C ] a failure to do something that happens as a particular event at a particular time:

a memory lapse
She had a momentary lapse in concentration and lost the game.

lapse noun (PERIOD)

[ U ] a period of time after an event or between two events:

Owing to the lapse of time since the crimes, none of the original witnesses could be found.

lapseverb [ I ]

us /læps/

lapse verb [ I ] (END)

to end something, either intentionally or accidentally, that might be continued or that should continue:

I must have let my subscription lapse, because I haven’t received any issues of the magazine in months.

Phrasal verb(s)

(Definition of “lapse” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

“lapse” in Business English

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lapseverb [ I ]

uk /læps/ us

if something such as an agreement lapses, it ends legally or officially because nothing has been done to make it continue, for example because payments are not made:

The agreement ran for three years, after which they decided to allow it to lapse.
Many uninsured drivers aren't even aware that their insurance has lapsed.

Phrasal verb(s)

lapsenoun

uk /læps/ us

[ C ] a mistake that is made because of a temporary lack of attention to something:

lapse in sth There had been a lapse in security at the company, and the personal details of hundreds of customers had been made public.
a security lapse

[ C, usually singular ] a period of time that passes between two things happening:

The company will resume paying a quarterly dividend on common shares, following a two-year lapse.
a time lapse

(Definition of “lapse” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)