This is a good strategy and it does work for many types of singularities. In fact, many times you don't even need "vicinity" data if your singularity is isolated. (In other words, being isolated is the "vicinity" data). If you do not assume that the singularities are isolated, then you need to assume something about $X\setminus H$.

**Typical theorem**

Let $X\subseteq \mathbb P^N$ be a quasi-projective variety and let $H\subseteq X$ be a hyperplane section and assume that $H$ only has singularities of type $\mathfrak T$. Then $X$ only has singularities of type $\mathfrak T$ along $H$. In particular, if in addition $X\setminus H$ only has singularities of type $\mathfrak T$, then so does $X$.

Obviously, whether or not the above theorem is in fact true depends on your choice of $\mathfrak T$. It is known in many cases and conjectured in others.

If singularities of type $\mathfrak T$ satisfy the general inverse of the above, that is if the

**General hyperplane section theorem**

Let $X\subseteq \mathbb P^N$ be a quasi-projective variety and let $H\subseteq X$ be a **general** hyperplane section and assume that $X$ only has singularities of type $\mathfrak T$. Then $H$ only has singularities of type $\mathfrak T$.

holds, then the two theorems together imply that small deformations of varieties with singularities of type $\mathfrak T$ still have singularities of type $\mathfrak T$.

In other words, a possible way to find the statement you are looking for is to look for papers that claim that certain singularity types are invariant under small deformations.

Here is a list of singularities for which both of these theorems hold:

*smooth* (Sketch of proof): being smooth means that the local ring is regular. If a ring mod a regular element is regular, then so is the ring.

*Cohen-Macaulay* : basically by the definition of CM

*Gorenstein* : Gor = CM + $\omega$ is a line bundle. CM follows from above and line bundle from the fact that if the restriction of a coherent sheaf to a hypersurface is a line bundle, then so is the original sheaf.

*rational* : This is a result of Elkik (Inventiones, cca. 1978)

*klt,dlt,lc,etc* : this is essentially inversion of adjunction

*Du Bois* : this is a result of Kovács-Schwede (available on arXiv.org)

**Remark**

In fact, there is a tendency toward $X$ having better singularities than $H$ does. Namely it is sometimes true that (for example)

If $H$ only has singularities of type $\mathfrak T$ and $X\setminus H$ is smooth, then $X$ only has singularities of type $\mathfrak T^+$ for some class of singularities that is *milder* than $\mathfrak T$.

An example for this is Karl Schwede's theorem (Thm.5.1 in *A simple characterization of Du Bois singularities*, Compositio Math. 143 (2007) 813–828) that says exactly this with $\mathfrak T$ being "Du Bois" and $\mathfrak T^+$ being "rational.