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Expressing Obligation: Simple definitions and good examples

expressing obligation

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There’s a variety of expressions and modals you can use to express obligation and necessity.

in this post, you’ll learn what obligation means and get to know various expressions you can use to express obligation and necessity.

Obligation definition

  • According to the Cambridge Dictionary, obligation means the fact that you are obliged to do something.

Obligations definition

  • Obligations refer to the things that a person must do because of a rule, an agreement, or a law.

Expressions of Obligation/ Expressing Obligation Phrases

Here are some examples of expressing obligation

expressing obligation

5 Examples of Expressing Obligation

  1. You absolutely must…….
  2. You really must…..
  3. You must….
  4. You have got to…..
  5. You have to…

  • It’s my duty to……
  • It’s compulsory to….
  • I find myself forced to …..

  • In order to….., you have to….
  • You cannot …..without…..
  • …….is a requirement of……
  • You need to….

Expressing obligation examples

Here are 5 examples of expressing obligation.

  • They cannot get into the country without a valid visa.
  • I was forced/obliged to borrow some money to pay for my studies.
  • You really must pay all your taxes by the end of this month.

  • Computer skills are compulsory for this job.
  • A Ph.D. is a requirement of this teaching position.

Enquiring if one is obliged to do something

  • Is it necessary to….
  • Do I need to…
  • Do I have to….
  • Have I got to……

  • Must I really….
  • Ought I to……
  • Must one……
  • Does one have to….

  • Am I supposed to…
  • Am I meant to…
  • Am I expected to…..

Modals expressing obligation examples

  • Must
  • Have to
  • Ought to
  • Should

To express strong obligation in English, you can use need to, must, have to and ought to.

Essential functional English lessons:

  • Asking for and giving advice
  • Asking for and giving opinion

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