MORATORIUM (from Lat. morari, to delay), a term used to express a legal authorization postponing for a specified time the payment of debts or obligations. The term is also sometimes used to mean the period over which the indulgence or period of grace stretches, the authorization itself being called a moratory law. A moratory law is usually passed in some special period of political or commercial stress; for instance, on several occasions during the Franco-German War the French government passed moratory laws. Their international validity was discussed at length and upheld in Rouquette v. Overman, 1875, L. R. 10 Q. B.