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lay off - definition and synonyms


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phrasal verb
Word Forms
present tense
I/you/we/theylay off
he/she/itlays off
present participlelaying off
past tenselaid off
past participlelaid off

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  1. 1
    [transitive] to end someones employment, especially temporarily, because there is not enough work for them
    They’ve had to cut back production and lay off workers.
  2. 2
    [intransitive/transitive]lay off something informal to stop doing or using something, especially for a short period of time
    I had to lay off the medication for a while to see if that was causing my headaches.
  3. 3
    [intransitive/transitive] [usually in imperative]lay off someone/something informal to stop doing something that is annoying someone
    Lay off! I’m trying to study.
    lay off doing something: Just lay off complaining for a minute!
See also main entry: lay


a course of study which is much shorter than a university course and focuses on the skills you need for a job, especially computer-related skills

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an ancient Roman system of underfloor heating, used to heat houses with hot air; from the Latin 'hypocaustum'

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