1. A legal document or property delivered by a promiser to a third party to be held by the third party for a given amount of time or until the occurrence of a condition, at which time the third party is to hand over the document or property to the promisee (the agent received the escrow two weeks before the closing date). 2. An account held in trust or as security. - Also termed escrow account; impound account; reserve account. 3. The holder of such a document, property, or deposit (the attorney performed the function of escrow). - Also termed escrow agent. 4. The general arrangement under which a legal document or property is delivered to a third person until the occurrence of a condition (creating an escrow). - escrow, vb.

"Like 'scroll' and 'scrawl,' the word 'escrow' is derived from the Norman-French word for a writing or a written instrument. It has come in practice to refer to a security device: one or both parties to a transaction deposit property or an instrument with a third party until some condition has occurred. The property or instrument may be referred to as 'the escrow'; the delivery is said to be 'in escrow.'" Restatement (Second) of Contracts 103 cmt. a (1981).