Definition of liable
2a : being in a position to incur —used with to liable to a fineb : exposed or subject to some usually adverse contingency or action watch out or you're liable to fall
liable vs. apt
Both liable and apt when followed by an infinitive are used nearly interchangeably with likely. Although conflicting advice has been given over the years, most current commentators accept apt when so used. They generally recommend limiting liable to situations having an undesirable outcome, and our evidence shows that in edited writing it is more often so used than not.
Examples of liable in a Sentence
If someone gets hurt on your property, you could be liable.
because of his frail constitution, he's liable to diseases
Recent Examples of liable from the Web
In October 1990, a federal jury found the leaders of a major white supremacist group liable for intentionally inciting the 1988 beating death of an Ethiopian man, Mulugeta Seraw, 27, at the corner of Pine Street and Southeast 31st Avenue.
This is, of course, just one study, and the next steps are liable to be important.
The woman’s relatives were unable to sue, when the Iowa Supreme Court ruled the state was not legally liable.
The Pentagon has already consumed $828 billion on the war, and taxpayers will be liable for trillions more in veterans’ health-care costs for decades to come.
The justices overturned an award of $4 million in damages to the couple and ordered a lower court to take another look at whether the deputies should be held liable for the shooting.
Last year, a federal judge ruled Amazon was liable.
Kashiya Nwanguma, the woman Heimbach allegedly pushed, accused him of assault and battery in her own lawsuit, according to the New York Times, a filing that also argues that Trump is liable for the shoving.
The case sets a strong precedent that ISPs in the United Kingdom potentially could be held liable for the content of gigabytes’ worth of materials that move over their servers daily.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'liable'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of liable
Middle English lyable, from Anglo-French *liable, from lier to bind, from Latin ligare — more at ligature
First Known Use: 15th century
Synonym Discussion of liable
synonyms see in addition responsible
LIABLE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of liable for English Language Learners
: legally responsible for something
: likely to be affected or harmed by something
: likely to do something
LIABLE Defined for Kids
Legal Definition of liable
1 : answerable according to law : bound or obligated according to law or equity one is liable as an accomplice to the crime of another — W. R. LaFave and A. W. Scott, Jr. the estate is liable for succession taxes — Commissioner of Revenue Services v. Estate of Culpepper, 493 A.2d 297 (1985)
2a : being in a position to incur —used with to liable to a fine property liable to duties b : subject or amenable according to law
Origin and Etymology of liable
ultimately from Old French lier to bind, from Latin ligare
Seen and Heard
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