In law, an occurrence, especially a disaster, that is due entirely to the forces of nature and that could not reasonably have been prevented, such as an earthquake, hurricane, or flood.

See also: negligence, force majeure
The monopolistic cable TV company Comcast, that services the area I live in, have the following clause in the cable modem subscriber agreement:
Customer shall have sole responsibility for protecting all Customer Equipment and software from loss or damage including, but not limited to, power surges, lightning, fire, flood and acts of God.

This, my fellow noders, is pure evil. Now, I am not a lawyer, but I'm questioning not only the morals but also the legal validity of this. When push comes to shove, will a court or a judge decide that a loss or damage of cable modem equipment was indeed an act of God and therefore my responsibility ? How can I be responsible for something that is an act of another being ? What if Santa steps on my cable modem equipment when he's sneaking around ? What if my neighbor does it ?  

  • If God does exist, how can I be legally responsible for things ascribed to Him/Her ? Is it implied and required that I have to tend to my relationship to God in such a way that bad "acts of God" don't happen to my cable modem ?
  • If God does not exist, how can anything be legally ascribed to Him/Her ? Has any court been able to make a ruling on His/Her existence ? What did God think of this ruling ?

Because of the unreasonable task to 1) decide upon the existence of God and 2) ascribe events to God, I highly doubt that the term "acts of God" has any real legal validity. Which is one more reason to be pissed-off at Comcast and its lawyers.

2002.01.08@22:57 CentrX says re: act of God: It's a legal term that is well-defined, not necessarily saying there is a God or what He does, it is defined in law.
2002.04.22@19:33 CentrX says re act of God: I should addend that this is still a stupid clause, because the legal definition is "could not reasonably have been prevented."

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