- To appropriate, seize, or take for oneself before others. See Synonyms at appropriate.
- To take the place of; displace: A special news program preempted the scheduled shows.
- To have precedence or predominance over: Discussion of the water shortage will preempt the other topics on this week's agenda.
- To gain possession of by prior right or opportunity, especially to settle on (public land) so as to obtain the right to buy before others.
- Games To make a preemptive bid in bridge.