dis·​qual·​i·​fy | \ (ˌ)dis-ˈkwä-lə-ˌfī How to pronounce disqualify (audio) \
disqualified; disqualifying; disqualifies

Definition of disqualify

transitive verb

1 : to deprive of the required qualities, properties, or conditions : make unfit
2 : to deprive of a power, right, or privilege
3 : to make ineligible for a prize or for further competition because of violations of the rules

Examples of disqualify in a Sentence

His poor eyesight disqualified him from becoming a pilot.
Recent Examples on the Web Some analysts predict the rules would disqualify buyers of most electric car models from claiming the $7,500-per-vehicle tax credit. Evan Halper, Washington Post, 3 Aug. 2022 Some car makers and industry lobbyists are concerned that those requirements could disqualify many or most of the electric vehicles sold in the U.S. today. Mike Colias, WSJ, 28 July 2022 By the standard of any profession, a failure this grave would disqualify a person from the job. John Dickerson, CBS News, 24 July 2022 Liberal activists who have mounted the effort to disqualify his candidacy say Cawthorn stoked violence and aided the insurrectionists. Marshall Cohen And Ethan Cohen, CNN, 8 Feb. 2022 Among the agenda items for that convention is an effort by conservatives to disqualify Biden from receiving Communion. BostonGlobe.com, 29 Oct. 2021 Of the 155,326 ballots received by state officials through Wednesday, 6,205 have been rejected for at least one of 17 reasons to disqualify a ballot without being counted. James Brooks And Yereth Rosen, Anchorage Daily News, 19 June 2022 Smith, who is canvassing in her district, said that more and more voters in the district are becoming familiar with her campaign despite Lyman’s effort to disqualify her. The Salt Lake Tribune, 3 May 2022 The Constitution says the House can disqualify Members’ elections, but that power hasn’t been used in more than three decades, and should be reserved for cases of serious misconduct. The Editorial Board, WSJ, 31 Mar. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of disqualify

1701, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Learn More About disqualify

Time Traveler for disqualify

Time Traveler

The first known use of disqualify was in 1701

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near disqualify




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for disqualify

Last Updated

9 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Disqualify.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/disqualify. Accessed 16 Aug. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for disqualify


dis·​qual·​i·​fy | \ dis-ˈkwä-lə-ˌfī How to pronounce disqualify (audio) \
disqualified; disqualifying

Kids Definition of disqualify

: to make or declare not fit to have, do, or take part in The judges disqualified the runner from the race.


transitive verb
dis·​qual·​i·​fy | \ dis-ˈkwä-lə-ˌfī How to pronounce disqualify (audio) \
disqualified; disqualifying

Legal Definition of disqualify

1 : to deprive of the required qualities, properties, or conditions a financial interest in the case that disqualified the judge
2 : to deprive of a right or privilege especially after a hearing misconduct that disqualified the employee from receiving unemployment benefits

More from Merriam-Webster on disqualify

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for disqualify

Nglish: Translation of disqualify for Spanish Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

The Great British Vocabulary Quiz

  • union jack speech bubble
  • Named after Sir Robert Peel, what are British police called?
True or False

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

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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