Act of God


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal, Acronyms, Idioms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

Act of God

In law, any event outside of human control, especially one that causes damage. Examples of acts of God include tornados, hurricanes and earthquakes. Many contracts do not have to be completed in the event of an act of God; that is, one is usually immune from having to perform on a contract rendered impossible by an act of God. Many companies, notably agricultural and similar corporations, have insurance to compensate for losses resulting from an act of God. An act of God is also called vis major, which is Latin for "superior force." See also: Act of God bond.

Act of God

An act caused exclusively by the violence of Nature, without any intervention from humans. Many contracts contain clauses relieving the parties of responsibility if an Act of God delays or makes impossible the performance of the contract.Examples include earthquakes,floods, hurricanes, lightning, tidal waves, tornadoes. (With current controversy over the effects of global warming, and with allegations that deficiencies in the New Orleans levee system caused the massive flooding in 2005, we can expect renewed litigation concerning flooding as an Act of God or of humans.)

References in periodicals archive ?
Malcolm Tarling of the Association of British Insurers says, 'The term act of God is a myth.
27% of Russians, 26% of Americans, and 15% of Korean respondents felt that the Tsunami was an act of God
Besides flooding, an Act of God coverage also insures a vehicle against earthquakes.
Because your husband had no part to play in the cause of the damage, he can take them to court and compel them to show that they had properly maintained the roof and that it was an act of God and nothing else that was responsible for the roof damage.
Nevertheless, within six hours of the blackout news spreading westward, Davis' press secretary was offering ``reflections on the New York blackout,'' comparing what an act of God did to the entire Eastern region with what an ``act of Enron'' did to California, which suffered only controlled, rolling blackouts in 2000-01.
City officials claimed the incident was an act of God.
While the upward spiral can't last forever, ``short of a major act of God or a stock market collapse,'' Ventura County will be booming into 2000, he said.
Easter is a celebration of the central act of God in the Christian faith - the resurrection of Jesus Christ,'' said Bryan Woken, pastor at Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran in West Hills, where the congregation doubles on Easter.