en·ti·tle·ment | \ in-ˈtī-tᵊl-mənt , en- \

Definition of entitlement 

1a : the state or condition of being entitled : right

b : a right to benefits specified especially by law or contract

2 : belief that one is deserving of or entitled to certain privileges

3 : a government program providing benefits to members of a specified group also : funds supporting or distributed by such a program

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Examples of entitlement in a Sentence

my entitlement to a refund celebrities who have an arrogant sense of entitlement entitlements such as medical aid for the elderly and poor
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Recent Examples on the Web

Some golden generations splutter and cough and, sealed in a bubble of entitlement, never come close to delivering. Jonathan Wilson, SI.com, "Trophy Window Suddenly Shrinks for Belgium's Golden Generation," 10 July 2018 They were shocked by my friend’s display of entitlement. Amy Dickinson, Detroit Free Press, "Parent catches child being cruel at the pool," 22 June 2018 Will entitlement reform hurt some of their constituents? WSJ, "We All See the Iceberg but Nobody Is Steering," 10 June 2018 Abuse of power is about entitlement, and many powerful men feel very entitled. Laura Mcgann, Vox, "There’s at least one more Eric Schneiderman accuser," 11 May 2018 When lawmaking is paralysed, important work, such as immigration and entitlement reform, is too hard. The Economist, "American democracy’s built-in bias towards rural Republicans," 12 July 2018 The development group has asked for an extension of city entitlements first granted to the project in 2007 and extended last year. Ryan Lillis And Tony Bizjak, sacbee, "Is a planned 40-story tower in downtown Sacramento finally on track?," 12 July 2018 That came on top of Kuwait’s cradle-to-grave entitlements for it citizens. Washington Post, "World Digest: July 8, 2018," 8 July 2018 But even as the Lakers go star chasing all over again, that kind of lazy entitlement is not really what's happening anymore. Andrew Sharp, SI.com, "Trusting the Lakers' Process in NBA Free Agency," 26 June 2018

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

1782, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Statistics for entitlement

Last Updated

19 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for entitlement

The first known use of entitlement was in 1782

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English Language Learners Definition of entitlement

: the condition of having a right to have, do, or get something

: the feeling or belief that you deserve to be given something (such as special privileges)

: a type of financial help provided by the government for members of a particular group



Legal Definition of entitlement 

1 : the state or condition of being entitled : claim evidence of victim's entitlement to money seizedNational Law Journal

2 : a right to benefits that is granted especially by law or contract (as an insurance policy)

Note: Some courts have held that entitlements are a property interest and therefore subject to procedural due process under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution when denied by federal or state governments.

3 : a government program that provides benefits to members of a group that has a statutory entitlement also : the benefits distributed by such a program

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Comments on entitlement

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


occurring twice a year or every two years

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