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commitment n1 : an act of committing: as
a : placement in or assignment to a prison or mental hospital [petition for ] compare incompetent, interdiction NOTE: Commitment to a mental health facility is called civil commitment when it is not part of a criminal proceeding. Civil commitment proceedings are initiated by the patient, in the case of voluntary commitment, or by someone (as a family member or government agent) authorized by statute to petition for the patient's involuntary commitment. Some form of a hearing and periodic review is required in involuntary commitment proceedings. A criminal defendant may be committed to a mental hospital as a result of being found incompetent to stand trial, not guilty by reason of insanity, or incompetent to be sentenced.
b : an act of referring a matter to a legislative committee
c : a warrant committing someone to a prison
2 : an agreement or promise to do something in the future
: a promise to assume a financial obligation at a future date [cannot meet their loan s]
Source: Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law ©1996. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. Published under license with Merriam-Webster, Incorporated.