cover (one's) back

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cover (one's) back

To act in order to avoid blame or responsibility for something or prevent oneself from experiencing negative consequences. I immediately covered my back by saying that I wasn't home when the puppy got out.
See also: back, cover
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

cover your back

BRITISH, AMERICAN or

cover your ass

AMERICAN, RUDE
If you do something in order to cover your back, you do it in order to protect yourself, for example against criticism or against accusations of doing something wrong. He had covered his back by persuading Evans, chairman of their finance committee, to provide a written approval for the contract. Newspaper editors have to cover their backs against accusations of libel.
See also: back, cover
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

cover your back

foresee and avoid the possibility of attack or criticism. informal
See also: back, cover
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

cover your ˈback

(informal) (American English also cover your ˈass taboo, slang) realize that you may be attacked or criticized for something later and make sure you avoid this: Cover your back by getting everything in writing. OPPOSITE: (lay/leave yourself) wide open (to something)
See also: back, cover
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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