Definition of disallow in English:



  • Refuse to declare valid.

    ‘the judge disallowed his evidence’
    • ‘Bill C - 325, introduced by Canadian Alliance MP Rick Casson, was defeated by a Liberal majority disallowing volunteer emergency workers to deduct $3,000 from their taxable income.’
    • ‘The UN Special Committee that vetoes imports to Iraq disallows essential painkillers, such as morphine and other chemotherapy medicines.’
    • ‘The Federal Court has supported the Tax Commissioner in disallowing tax breaks for investments in the Lismore-based Australian Tea Tree Oil Research Institute.’
    • ‘The single grievance leading to this appeal arises out of the trial judge's refusal to disallow the evidence of what was said between the appellant and the police officers prior to arrest.’
    • ‘It provides that the Judge may disallow such costs but it does not say that he has to do so.’
    • ‘The only problem with disallowing such evidence is that it might not then be made available; this is unlikely because manufacturers will continue to provide any evidence that is favourable to their claims.’
    • ‘Scholars disapproved of frivolous divorces and might help by disallowing oaths if evidence showed that the man had been temporarily insane or in some way mentally deficient, or that he had pronounced an incorrect formula.’
    • ‘For example, the Wildlife Protection Act undermines its own potential by disallowing Community Reserves to be declared on government land.’
    • ‘Better, said Blatter, to allow an offside goal than to disallow a good one.’
    • ‘The only exception to this rule is that transitions to stop codons are disallowed.’
    • ‘However, the goal was disallowed after Hilborn was called for a pushing-off foul.’
    • ‘The particular Louisiana statute which allows emergency controls on firearms also clearly disallows the complete prohibition being imposed by the New Orleans chief of police.’
    • ‘As such, we disallow it as a valid operation on numbers.’
    • ‘Excessive job security that disallows employers from getting rid of redundant labour is the main cause for this jobless growth.’
    • ‘There was a 20% reduction in the number of appeals against decisions disallowing unemployment payments, while appeals relating to disability benefit fell by 13%.’
    • ‘But in 2001, the Supreme Court handed down a decision against The New York Times, disallowing the electronic distribution of archived stories done by freelancers who had copyrights on the material.’
    • ‘The clauses in the contract for the delivery and deployment of the SS - 23 missile system disallowing its re-sale, donation or transfer to the territory of another country would be honoured, he said.’
    • ‘In this case the flag has gone up and the referee has had to disallow the goal.’
    • ‘No advantage was given and the goal was disallowed because of the infringement.’
    • ‘Indeed, the plaintiffs in this case (Tufford v. Merck) are relying on decisions disallowing the use of animal tests by plaintiffs to prove causation.’
    reject, refuse, dismiss, say no to
    ban, bar, block, stop, debar, forbid, prohibit, blackball
    cancel, declare null and void, invalidate, overrule, quash, overturn, countermand, reverse, throw out, set aside
    veto, embargo, proscribe
    give the thumbs down to, squash
    View synonyms


Late Middle English (in the sense disown, refuse to accept): from Old French desalouer.