behind in

Idioms & Phrases

behind in

  1. Also, behind on. Late with; not progressing quickly enough with. For example, The builders are behind on this project, or I can't take time out or I'll be too far behind in my work. The same idea is also expressed as behind time, where time means a schedule or appointed time, as in The bus should have been here; it's behind time. [Early 1300s] Also see fall behind.

  2. In arrears, owing more than one should. For example, Jane and Bob are behind in their payments, so the interest will mount up. [Late 1300s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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