(no) hard and fast rule(s)


1. a set of rules or guidelines that are clearly defined or strictly followed






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do what you think necessary, there are no hard and fast rules

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A 'hard and fast' rule is a rule or guideline that is clearly defined or strictly followed. If you say there ‘are no hard and fast rules’ it means there is no guideline or strict rule to follow, you have some freedom to decide for yourself what the best course of action is. You can use this expression to make recommendations of what someone can do in a particular situation. ‘There are no hard and fast rules, but usually, the best approach is to...’ You can use this expression in a number of contexts, both social and professional contexts.

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  1. The office has a set of hard and fast rules that every employee is expected to adhere to.
  2. Do whatever you think is necessary to get the task done. There are no hard and fast rules.
  3. The teacher put a hard and fast rule in place to stop students from using their mobile phones in the classroom.

Check Icon Social Examples (Basic)

  1. There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to parenting, but most people can agree on a few basic approaches.
  2. I wouldn’t park near the hospital personally, but there are no hard and fast rules. The town doesn’t issue parking tickets.

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