liability

Definition

An obligation that legally binds an individual or company to settle a debt. When one is liable for a debt, they are responsible for paying the debt or settling a wrongful act they may have committed.

For example, if John hits Jane's car, John is liable for the damages to Jane's vehicle because John is responsible for the damages.

In the case of a company, a liability is recorded on the balance sheet and can include accounts payable, taxes, wages, accrued expenses, and deferred revenues. Current liabilities are debts payable within one year, while long-term liabilities are debts payable over a longer period.

See also: List of Key Accounting Terms and Definitions at InvestorGuide.com.

Use liability in a sentence

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