con·​trac·​tor | \ sense 1 is usually ˈkän-ˌtrak-tər How to pronounce contractor (audio) , sense 2 is usually kən-ˈtrak- How to pronounce contractor (audio) \

Definition of contractor

1 : one that contracts or is party to a contract: such as
a : one that contracts to perform work or provide supplies
b : one that contracts to erect buildings
2 : something (such as a muscle) that contracts or shortens

Examples of contractor in a Sentence

They hired a contractor to remodel the kitchen.
Recent Examples on the Web That’s why federal ethics rules regarding favors are generally so strict, prohibiting government employees from accepting all but the most minimal gifts (even modest meals) from contractors and foreign agents. Marcus Hedahl, The Conversation, "A Navy scandal sheds light on the nature of bribery and the limits of free speech," 17 Jan. 2020 Three other men, including a general contractor and an accountant, pleaded guilty last year. Mallory Moench,, "Benicia solar company executive pleads guilty to defrauding investors of $1 billion," 17 Jan. 2020 The project is expected to employ 569 construction workers and 65 employees in the commercial space upon completion, with the Regional Income Tax Agency (RITA) auditing the contractors and subcontractors. Thomas Jewell, cleveland, "Cleveland Heights council hears more about Top of the Hill financing," 14 Jan. 2020 One person familiar with the feeling is Kate Hewitt, a federal contractor and adviser at Girl Security, a nonprofit organization that educates girls in middle and high school on national security. Fernando Alfonso Iii, CNN, "How Americans and Iranians are using memes and hashtags to cope with conflict," 11 Jan. 2020 The law, known as Assembly Bill 5, took effect January 1 and codifies a 2018 California Supreme Court decision formalizing the distinction between independent contractors and employees. Aarian Marshall, Wired, "A New Law for Gig Workers Reaches Beyond Ride-Hail Drivers," 10 Jan. 2020 Sultenfuss has hired Adam Monaco, a general contractor and insurance adjuster, to help handle the claim with USAA. Patrick Danner,, "April hailstorm still causing hassles for some Dominion homeowners," 9 Jan. 2020 Last November, the general contractor and an unlicensed plumber were found guilty of manslaughter and other related charges. Derek M. Norman, New York Times, "Fried Fish. Rave Reviews. Then Someone Messed With the Gas Lines.," 8 Jan. 2020 The lawsuit, filed in state District Court in Santa Fe, described Zoë Williams as an ex-contractor and Mar Williams as an employee. John Wenzel, The Know, "Meow Wolf complaints are piling up as new name joins Denver lawsuit," 13 Dec. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'contractor.' 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 contractor

1548, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about contractor

Time Traveler for contractor

Time Traveler

The first known use of contractor was in 1548

See more words from the same year

Statistics for contractor

Last Updated

20 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Contractor.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 20 January 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for contractor


How to pronounce contractor (audio) How to pronounce contractor (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of contractor

: a person who is hired to perform work or to provide goods at a certain price or within a certain time


con·​trac·​tor | \ ˈkän-ˌtrak-tər How to pronounce contractor (audio) , kən-ˈ How to pronounce contractor (audio) \

Medical Definition of contractor

: something (as a muscle) that contracts or shortens


con·​trac·​tor | \ ˈkän-ˌtrak-tər, kən-ˈtrak- How to pronounce contractor (audio) \

Legal Definition of contractor

: one that contracts: as
a : one that contracts to perform work or provide supplies
b : one that contracts to erect buildings

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on contractor

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with contractor

Spanish Central: Translation of contractor

Nglish: Translation of contractor for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of contractor for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about contractor

Comments on contractor

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


not to be intimidated or subdued

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Eponym Quiz

  • rubens painting
  • Which is the best synonym of bowdlerize?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


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!