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in the Scots law of contract, the right for A not to pay money due to B under a contract until damages due by B to A under the same contract are ascertained. Thus, a claim for freight may be opposed by a claim for damage done to the goods in transit. In bankruptcy or liquidation, a party who is facing an illiquid claim may retain in respect of an illiquid sum owed to him by the bankrupt and it is not necessary that the debts should arise out of the same contract.

In the law of Sale of Goods 1979, where the property in goods has not passed to the buyer, the unpaid seller has a right to withhold delivery similar to and co-extensive with his rights of lien or retention and stoppage in transit where the property has passed to the buyer.

Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006

RETENTION, Scottish law. The right which the possessor of a movable has, of holding the same until he shall be satisfied for his claim either against such movable or the owner of it; a lien.
     2. The right of retention is of two kinds, namely, special or general. 1. Special retention is the right of withholding or retaining property of goods which are in one's possession under a contract, till indemnified for the labor or money expended on them. 2. General retention is the right to withhold or detain the property of another, in respect of any debt which happens to be due by the proprietor to the person who has the custody; or for a general balance of accounts arising on a particular train of employment. 2 Bell's Com. 90, 91, 5th ed. Vide Lien.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
Local anesthesia has become a popular practice in many open surgical procedures which is also used for postoperative pain relief.5 The purpose of this randomized prospective clinical study was to evaluate post-operative pain, analgesia, cost, hospital stay and complications such as: (headache, urine retention, hypotension, respiratory symptoms, urticaria, nausea and vomiting) in Hemorrhoid surgery by using local infiltration and sedation and to compare it with spinal and general anesthesia.
(Times)-- * Urine retention? (Times)-- * Other?--(Times)-- If hospitalized, how many bed days did you need regarding: * Strictures?
Symptoms of datura-poisoning include flushed, warm and dry skin, dry mouth, urine retention, hypertension, delirium with hallucinations, jerky movements, hyperthermia, coma, respiratory arrest and rare seizures, followed by depression.
The most important side-effects of epidural analgesia are motor block, urine retention, infection, systemic toxicity of local anaesthetics and intraspinal bleeding.
The bladder scanner will be used throughout the hospital to assess urine retention and help avoid other uncomfortable procedures.
Pills such as Sudafed also help but work by constricting blood vessels, and have been linked to blood pressure problems, urine retention and glaucoma.
On April 10 after trouble from urine retention, he was taken into hospital by ambulance and kept in a ward where he soon made good progress.
Intermittent catheterization for post-operative urine retention. Nursing Times, 93(33), 46-47.
BPH can restrict the flow of urine, resulting in urine retention, which can cause weakening of the bladder wall and the inability to empty the bladder completely.