From W3C Wiki

Proposal to add "dissolutionDate" property to Organization

Submitted by James McKinney 02:23, 28 August 2013 (UTC)

Mailing list thread: http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-vocabs/2013Aug/0101.html


Add a "dissolutionDate" property to Organization.

  • Property: dissolutionDate
  • Expected Type: Date
  • Description: The date on which this organization was dissolved.


Organization has a foundingDate property to mark the beginning of an organization, but it has no property to mark the end.

Term choice

Of the words used to describe the end of an organization, "dissolution" seems to be the most appropriate in terms of meaning, usage and geographic coverage. Other words include "liquidation", "termination" and "cessation". Liquidation implies a particular process that not all organizations necessarily go through when they end. In most cases, dissolution and termination are synonymous. However, in the case of partnerships, dissolution may sometimes refer to the date on which the legal entity ceases operation, but before it is officially would up and terminated. I believe in most cases, users care about the date on which operations end, not the date on which all the i's are dotted and t's are crossed on all paperwork relating to the dissolution. Cessation may be confused with a business temporarily becoming inactive and then resuming activity. "Dissolution" seems to be the best term.

Prior work

Prior work includes vCard 4.0, which has a DEATHDATE property, but that doesn't fit semantically with organizations, because organizations do not "die". The Government Core Ontology has a cessationDate property. The following vocabularies have a dateOfTermination property:


Every corporate registry publishes the dissolution dates of dissolved companies. For example, OpenCorporates lists over 6 million dissolved companies across 25 jurisdictions. Various other directories of companies publish dissolution dates.



<div itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Organization">
  <span itemprop="name">XYZ Inc.</span>
  <span itemprop="foundingDate" content="2011-05-20">May 20, 2011</span>
  <span itemprop="dissolutionDate" content="2013-08-27">August 27, 2013</span>