claw back


Definition of claw back 

transitive verb

chiefly British

: to get back (something, such as money) by strenuous or forceful means (such as taxation)

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from claw back

clawback \ˈklȯ-ˌbak \ noun

Examples of claw back in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

For reference, pharmacy benefit managers clawed back $1.9 million from Cleveland Clinic retail pharmacies in 2017, and have taken $1.4 million so far through May 2018. Scott Knoer, STAT, "What does PBM stand for? In Ohio (and elsewhere), it’s programs bilking millions," 29 June 2018 Vanguard Social Index did claw back some losses since the latter months of the 2008 bear market, due to heavier stakes in technology and health-care stocks. Erin Arvedlund,, "Do ESG investments outperform? One investor says 'no way'," 9 July 2018 The Coalition Against an FC Cincinnati Stadium announced its plan to claw back the city portion of the hotel tax last month on the same day FC Cincinnati was granted a Major League Soccer spot. Cameron Knight,, "Organizers: Petition to put FC Cincinnati money on ballot has failed," 27 June 2018 Because now the House has passed a bill clawing back an enormous, a gigantic, a stupendous $15 billion of that spending. Ed Kilgore, Daily Intelligencer, "After Blowing Up the Deficit, House Passes Mostly Phony Spending Cuts," 8 June 2018 Carolyn Holland, Ecotrust's vice president for communications, would not say what counterpoints the group has about the state's plan to claw back part of the tax credit. Hillary Borrud,, "Oregon could claw back $1 million tax credit from failed sawmill," 11 May 2018 But behind junior guards Jon Davis (37 points) and Andrien White (28), the 49ers clawed back. David Scott, charlotteobserver, "‘Always one or two little things.’ Charlotte 49ers drop 15th consecutive game | Charlotte Observer," 1 Mar. 2018 Arizona clawed back with three unanswered goals in regulation. USA TODAY, "Coyotes score 4 straight to top Wild in OT," 8 Feb. 2018 On Monday, Justice Gerald Lebovitz ruled that under a 2004 kiss-off agreement with Lutz, Madge forfeited her right to claw back her private items., "Madonna loses bid to keep silk panties, Tupac's break-up letter from being auctioned off," 24 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'claw back.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of claw back

1953, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about claw back

Statistics for claw back

Last Updated

7 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for claw back

The first known use of claw back was in 1953

See more words from the same year

Comments on claw back

What made you want to look up claw back? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a generally accepted meaning of a word

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Great Scrabble Words—A Quiz

  • scrabble-tiles-that-read-scrabble-quiz
  • Which of the following Q-without-U words means the number five in cards or dice?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!