litigate

verb
lit·​i·​gate | \ ˈli-tə-ˌgāt How to pronounce litigate (audio) \
litigated; litigating

Definition of litigate

intransitive verb

: to carry on a legal contest by judicial (see judicial sense 1a) process only states can litigate before this court— R. H. Heindel

transitive verb

1 : to decide and settle in a court of law litigate a claim
2 archaic : dispute

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from litigate

litigable \ ˈli-​ti-​gə-​bəl How to pronounce litigate (audio) \ adjective

Examples of litigate in a Sentence

They agree to litigate all disputes in this court. The company's unwillingness to make a deal increased her desire to litigate.
Recent Examples on the Web If the wage freeze is found to be invalid, the Biden administration could simply choose not to litigate it further. Jonah Goldman Kay, The New Republic, "The Lethal Inequality on American Farms," 22 Dec. 2020 The sketch finds Robinson’s character attempting to alternately cajole and litigate a group of angry people into not being angry with him. Kath Barbadoro, Vulture, "Stupid Times Call for Stupid Jokes," 14 Jan. 2021 The pact includes no new investor protection mechanism that would allow European firms to directly litigate disputes. Laurence Norman, WSJ, "EU, China Agree on Terms of Investment Pact Despite U.S. Wariness," 30 Dec. 2020 Insurers settle the claims rather than go through the time and expense to litigate them, passing those costs along to other insurance customers and driving auto insurance rates up, advocates said. David Jacobs, Washington Examiner, "Changes to Louisiana's legal system fail to get state off 'judicial hellhole' list," 10 Dec. 2020 Acting city solicitor Dana Moore said the city would litigate remaining claims. Washington Post, "Baltimore expected to pay $8 million to settle Gun Trace Task Force lawsuit," 15 Nov. 2020 With the Justice Department filing a case against Google in October and the Federal Trade Commission and state attorneys general filing cases against Facebook last week, this reticence to litigate seems to be shifting. Matt Perault, WSJ, "Big Tech and Antitrust: A Path Forward," 16 Dec. 2020 The president and his allies have also alleged that the election was rife with fraud and have filed lawsuits in a slew of states in an effort to litigate their way to the White House. Melissa Quinn, CBS News, "Money raised for Trump's election fights would help cover campaign debt," 9 Nov. 2020 City Solicitor Dana Moore said the city would litigate remaining claims. Justin Fenton, baltimoresun.com, "Baltimore expected to pay $8 million to settle Gun Trace Task Force lawsuit, eclipsing amount in Freddie Gray case," 13 Nov. 2020

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

1615, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for litigate

Latin litigatus, past participle of litigare, from lit-, lis lawsuit + agere to drive — more at agent

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about litigate

Time Traveler for litigate

Time Traveler

The first known use of litigate was in 1615

See more words from the same year

Statistics for litigate

Last Updated

19 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Litigate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/litigate. Accessed 5 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for litigate

litigate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of litigate

law : to make (something) the subject of a lawsuit : to cause (a case, an issue, etc.) to be decided and settled in a court of law

litigate

verb
lit·​i·​gate | \ ˈli-tə-ˌgāt How to pronounce litigate (audio) \
litigated; litigating

Legal Definition of litigate

intransitive verb

: to seek resolution of a legal contest by judicial process chose to litigate rather than settle

transitive verb

: to make the subject of a suit litigate a claim broadly : to contest or resolve in court litigate an insanity defense

Other Words from litigate

litigable \ ˈli-​tə-​gə-​bəl How to pronounce litigate (audio) \ adjective
litigation \ ˌli-​tə-​ˈgā-​shən How to pronounce litigate (audio) \ noun
litigational \ -​shə-​nəl \ adjective
litigatory \ ˈli-​tə-​gə-​ˌtōr-​ē \ adjective

History and Etymology for litigate

Latin litigatus, past participle of litigare, from lit-, lis lawsuit + agere to drive

More from Merriam-Webster on litigate

Nglish: Translation of litigate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of litigate for Arabic Speakers

Comments on litigate

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Who Knew?

Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

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!