noun, plural contingencies.
dependence on chance or on the fulfillment of a condition; uncertainty; fortuitousness: Nothing was left to contingency.
a contingent event; a chance, accident, or possibility conditional on something uncertain: He was prepared for every contingency.
something incidental to a thing.

1555–65; conting(ent) + -ency

2. emergency, likelihood, predicament. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
contingency (kənˈtɪndʒənsɪ)
n , pl -cies
1.  a.  a possible but not very likely future event or condition; eventuality
 b.  (as modifier): a contingency plan
2.  something dependent on a possible future event
3.  a fact, event, etc, incidental to or dependent on something else
4.  in systemic grammar
 a.  Compare adding modification of the meaning of a main clause by use of a bound clause introduced by a binder such as if, when, though, or since
 b.  (as modifier): a contingency clause
5.  logic
 a.  the state of being contingent
 b.  a contingent statement
6.  dependence on chance; uncertainty
7.  statistics
 a.  the degree of association between theoretical and observed common frequencies of two graded or classified variables. It is measured by the chi-square test
 b.  (as modifier): a contingency table; the contingency coefficient

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

1560s, "quality of being contingent," from contingent (q.v.). Meaning "a chance occurrence" is from 1610s.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
It gets the job done, even if it doesn't let you ask every question or address
  every contingency.
Create a contingency that outsources each office's duties to other locations
  and/or third-party vendors.
Even area hospitals have been briefed on emergency contingency plans.
Political scientists and campaign consultants tend not to account for
  contingency when they are busy predicting the future.
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