dis·miss·al | \-ˈmi-səl \

Definition of dismissal 

: the act of dismissing : the fact or state of being dismissed

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Synonyms for dismissal


ax (or axe), discharge, furlough, layoff

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Examples of dismissal in a Sentence

numerous dismissals from the company during the economic slump

Recent Examples on the Web

In the latest wave of dismissals, announced Sunday, more than 18,000 state employees were stripped of their jobs for alleged ties to terror groups. David Gauthier-villars, WSJ, "Turkish Leader Takes Oath With New Powers and High Ambitions," 9 July 2018 Though the topic of the dismissal is still painful, Cristina is unwilling to speak ill of Jara or La Taqueria. Jonathan Kauffman, SFChronicle.com, "La Taqueria workers’ risky complaints over unpaid overtime, health care bring reforms," 30 June 2018 Work gloves are sold at an exorbitant price, and food and transport is forcibly sold to workers, under threat of dismissal. Elena Comelli, The Christian Science Monitor, "Tomato workers fight exploitation by making their own sauce in Apulia," 15 June 2018 The state’s planned appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court of the dismissal of murder charges against Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel can proceed after the state Supreme Court this week granted a stay of its ruling that Skakel did not get a fair trial. Courant Staff Report, courant.com, "State Can Proceed In Appealing Skakel Decision To U.S. Supreme Court," 12 June 2018 Rumors of the dismissal or reconstitution of the board had been lingering for weeks. Washington Post, "Mulvaney dissolves group that advised consumer watchdog," 7 June 2018 The Fort Worth law firm McDonald Sanders, which is representing TCU, did $30,000 worth of work to fight a motion of dismissal brought by Listenbee's attorney, which was originally filed in March. Stefan Stevenson, star-telegram, "Listenbee lawsuit against TCU is already piling up lawyer fees," 5 June 2018 As some tried to analyze what Cooke's order of dismissal meant, some made light of the move and offered their own interpretation. Jacqueline Charles And Jay Weaver, miamiherald, "Haiti's Guy Philippe still pursuing freedom, and $100 million, despite his guilty plea," 1 June 2018 Abraham’s lawyer filed a notice of voluntary dismissal of the suit, according to Texas court documents obtained by The Blast. Alexia Fernandez, PEOPLE.com, "Farrah Abraham’s Daughter Sips on $150 Apple Juice with Gold Flakes While on Vacation in Dubai," 30 May 2018

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

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First Known Use of dismissal

1778, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for dismissal

Last Updated

21 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for dismissal

The first known use of dismissal was in 1778

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More Definitions for dismissal


dis·miss·al | \dis-ˈmi-səl \

Kids Definition of dismissal

: the act of dismissing : the state or fact of being dismissed The students will have an early dismissal.



Legal Definition of dismissal 

1 : removal from a position or service

2a : the termination of an action or claim usually before the presentation of evidence by the defendant

involuntary dismissal

1 : the dismissal of an action by the court because of the plaintiff's failure to pursue his or her case

2 : the dismissal of an action by the court upon motion of the defendant after presentation of the plaintiff's case made on the grounds that the plaintiff has shown no right to relief

Note: An involuntary dismissal under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 41(b) prevents the plaintiff from bringing suit again based on the same claim.

voluntary dismissal

: the dismissal of an action by the plaintiff

Note: Under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 41(a), a plaintiff may dismiss an action without a court order anytime before the defendant serves an answer or moves for summary judgment, or by stipulation of the parties. Otherwise, a court order is required. A court-ordered dismissal will not prevent the plaintiff from bringing the action again unless the order so states. A dismissal without a court order will not bar the plaintiff from bringing the action again unless the plaintiff has brought the same action already.

b : the cancellation of an indictment, information, complaint, or charge

Note: Under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 48, the attorney for the government may dismiss the indictment, information, or complaint with the court's approval. The court may also dismiss it if there is unnecessary delay in the government's prosecution of the case.

c : a document setting forth the request for a dismissal plaintiff filed a dismissal

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Comments on dismissal

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


not any or not one

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