delinquent

noun
de·​lin·​quent | \-kwənt \

Definition of delinquent 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: a usually young person who regularly performs illegal or immoral acts

delinquent

adjective

Definition of delinquent (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : offending by neglect or violation of duty or of law … were clearly delinquent in not immediately alerting Western Europe to the accident …— Richard Wilson

2 : being overdue in payment a delinquent charge account … efforts to crack down on parents delinquent in child-support payments …— Todd S. Purdum

3 : of, relating to, or characteristic of people who regularly perform illegal or immoral acts : marked by delinquency (see delinquency sense 1b) delinquent behavior

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from delinquent

Adjective

delinquently adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for delinquent

Synonyms: Adjective

behind, behindhand, belated, late, latish, overdue, tardy

Antonyms: Adjective

early, inopportune, precocious, premature, unseasonable, untimely

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of delinquent in a Sentence

Noun

a group of violent delinquents

Adjective

a school for delinquent children His delinquent behavior could lead to more serious problems. The town is trying to collect delinquent taxes.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The government dismisses them as delinquents and says police have to respond when students disrupt traffic. Washington Post, "AP PHOTOS: University becomes refuge in Nicaragua unrest," 5 July 2018 The suspect is being tried in juvenile court as a juvenile delinquent, which is defined by Indiana law as an individual under 18 who is arrested or breaks the law. Dakota Crawford, Indianapolis Star, "Noblesville shooting: Here's what could happen next for the suspect," 18 June 2018 Carroll's program notes liken the 1960 feature Everything Goes Wrong—about a juvenile delinquent who plans to frame his mother's boyfriend in a crime—to Nagisa Oshima's Cruel Story of Youth, which was released around the same time. Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader, "Do This / Film / Foreign Doc Films showcases the lesser-known work of Japanese director Seijun Suzuki," 5 Jan. 2018 And while City Hall plans to send hundreds of millions more to the district over the next five years, that revenue is tied to future city budget cuts and better collections from tax delinquents, both of which could fall short. Philly.com, "For Philly's new school board: Lessons from the SRC's 17 years," 1 July 2018 By federal law these delinquents aren’t allowed to receive some grants for, say, technology updates, but that stick is unlikely to change behavior. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Governments Steal Emergency Money," 3 May 2018 The home is not a detention center for delinquents. Carol Marbin Miller, miamiherald, "Hisplace," 15 May 2018 Adams was charged April 11with attempted first-degree homicide, possession of a firearm by a person who is declared delinquent, burglary, armed robbery with threat of force and two counts of theft. Karen Pilarski, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Madison teens charged with stealing 20-30 firearms from Oconomowoc gun store," 9 May 2018 Still got a degree in criminal law at Penn State with the idea of helping juvenile delinquents when his football career ended. Joe Kay, Cincinnati.com, "Devon Still's new career: trying to tackle childhood cancer," 4 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

If an owner is delinquent and is not signed up in a payment program, his or her rental license can be revoked. Jeff Piorkowski/special To Cleveland.com, cleveland.com, "University Heights City Council approves guidelines for keeping chickens," 3 Apr. 2018 Parents who cosign a private student loan need to consider the possibility that a child could be delinquent or default, Ms. Javice says. Cheryl Winokur Munk, WSJ, "Should a Parent or Student Take Out the College Loan?," 8 July 2018 Tax officials said the overdue bills, if not paid by July, will be certified as officially delinquent and will go to a collection agency. Mike Ward, Houston Chronicle, "Democrat gubernatorial candidate Valdez owes $12K in overdue property taxes," 24 May 2018 Constables serve warrants on delinquent taxpayers and collect payments, said John Rainaldi, the town’s director of assessment and collection. Jesse Leavenworth, Courant Community, "Manchester Dem Chief Says GOP Official's Facebook Comment Racist; Calls For His Resignation," 9 July 2018 San Francisco’s Log Cabin Ranch — the last resort for the city’s delinquent juveniles, short of a state lockup — has been closed indefinitely following an unprecedented number of teens going AWOL. Matier & Ross, SFChronicle.com, "City closes youth corrections facility — residents keep running away," 27 June 2018 This program, created by the Texas Legislature in 2017, gives some delinquent taxpayers the opportunity to become up to date with state tax law — and any fees and state and local taxes still owed — without facing any penalties.. Anna M. Tinsley, star-telegram, "Tax amnesty for some Texas business owners runs out Friday," 27 June 2018 The second payment was due Feb.1, but not delinquent until after April 10. Phillip Molnar, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Pay your San Diego property tax bill yet? It's due April 10," 5 Apr. 2018 In November, the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reported that Bryce had been delinquent on child support, and paid up shortly after entering the campaign. James Hohmann, Washington Post, "The Daily 202: Kavanaugh’s paper trail makes his confirmation harder but ensures he’ll be reliably conservative," 10 July 2018

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

1603, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for delinquent

Noun

see delinquent entry 2

Adjective

Latin delinquent-, delinquens, present participle of delinquere to fail, offend, from de- + linquere to leave — more at loan

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about delinquent

Share delinquent

Statistics for delinquent

Last Updated

29 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for delinquent

The first known use of delinquent was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for delinquent

delinquent

noun

English Language Learners Definition of delinquent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a young person who regularly does illegal or immoral things

delinquent

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of delinquent (Entry 2 of 2)

: doing things that are illegal or immoral

: not paid at the required or expected time

: failing to pay an amount of money that is owed

delinquent

noun
de·​lin·​quent | \di-ˈliŋ-kwənt \

Kids Definition of delinquent

: a usually young person who is guilty of improper or illegal behavior

delinquent

noun
de·​lin·​quent | \-kwənt \

Medical Definition of delinquent 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: a transgressor against duty or the law especially in a degree not constituting crime specifically : juvenile delinquent

delinquent

adjective

Medical Definition of delinquent (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : offending by neglect or violation of duty or of law

2 : of, relating to, or characteristic of delinquents : marked by delinquency

Other Words from delinquent

delinquently adverb

Keep scrolling for more

delinquent

noun
de·​lin·​quent | \di-ˈliŋ-kwənt \

Legal Definition of delinquent 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: a delinquent person especially : juvenile delinquent

delinquent

adjective

Legal Definition of delinquent (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : offending by neglect or violation of duty or law delinquent acts

b : characterized by juvenile delinquency delinquent youth

2 : being overdue in payment delinquent taxes was delinquent in his child support payments

History and Etymology for delinquent

Adjective

Latin delinquent-, delinquens, present participle of delinquere to commit (an offense), err

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on delinquent

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

WORD OF THE DAY

playful or foolish behavior

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Autumn Words of the Day 2018

  • a-top-down-image-of-road-through-an-autumn-forest
  • Which is a synonym of fugacious?
True or False

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

TAKE THE QUIZ
Citation

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

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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