mis·​con·​duct | \ ˌmis-ˈkän-(ˌ)dəkt How to pronounce misconduct (audio) \

Definition of misconduct

1 : mismanagement especially of governmental or military responsibilities
2 : intentional wrongdoing specifically : deliberate violation of a law or standard especially by a government official : malfeasance
3a : improper behavior
4 : a penalty (as in ice hockey) for improper behavior or abusive language (as toward an official)

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Other Words from misconduct

misconduct \ ˌmis-​kən-​ˈdəkt How to pronounce misconduct (audio) \ transitive verb

Examples of misconduct in a Sentence

He was forced to defend himself against charges of sexual misconduct. There have been reports of misconduct by several employees.
Recent Examples on the Web There have been no reports of Rooney being accused of misconduct in Alabama. al, "Priest accused of abuse in New Jersey moved to Alabama," 17 Feb. 2020 As the passage of time brings new examples of misconduct in baseball and new penalties, the comparative fairness of old penalties can change. Paul Daugherty, Cincinnati.com, "Doc's Morning Line: Hold on, Mobsters. Today, we're tossing it around the horn.," 12 Feb. 2020 The National Catholic Church of North America is not the only ministry priests have turned to after allegations of misconduct. Li Cohen, CBS News, "Priests on sex offender registry find a home in alternative ministry," 5 Feb. 2020 The Star-Ledger newspaper in Newark reported the traffic stop involving two troopers led to changes in how state police handle complaints of misconduct. Washington Post, "Report: Albuquerque police hired convicted felon," 31 Jan. 2020 Last Thursday, Deborah Dugan, the president and chief executive of the Recording Academy, the organization that hosts the show, was placed on administrative leave following accusations of misconduct, setting off a series of claims and counterclaims. Amanda Petrusich, The New Yorker, "The 2020 Grammys Fiasco," 24 Jan. 2020 It’s ten days until the Grammy Awards, and the CEO behind the ceremony has been put on leave due to an allegation of misconduct. Kristen Bellstrom, Fortune, "Broadsheet readers talk about sharing their salary," 17 Jan. 2020 Sources contacted by Billboard would not address the specific allegation of misconduct, but allege that, despite a thorough and months-long search for a new CEO, Dugan had not been a good fit almost from the start. Melinda Newman, The Hollywood Reporter, "Recording Academy President Placed on Administrative Leave a Week Before Grammys," 17 Jan. 2020 Former Chancellor Richard Wells and former Vice Chancellor Tom Sonnleitner pleaded guilty Wednesday in Winnebago County Circuit Court to one count each of misconduct in office in excess of their authority as part of a plea deal with prosecutors. Devi Shastri, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Former UW-Oshkosh administrators fined $75,500 in felony misconduct case," 15 Jan. 2020

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

1705, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for misconduct

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The first known use of misconduct was in 1705

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Statistics for misconduct

Last Updated

20 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Misconduct.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/misconduct. Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for misconduct


How to pronounce misconduct (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of misconduct

: wrong behavior : behavior or activity that is illegal or morally wrong


mis·​con·​duct | \ mis-ˈkän-ˌdəkt How to pronounce misconduct (audio) \

Kids Definition of misconduct

: bad behavior


mis·​con·​duct | \ mis-ˈkän-dəkt How to pronounce misconduct (audio) \

Legal Definition of misconduct

: intentional or wanton wrongful but usually not criminal behavior: as
a : deliberate or wanton violation of standards of conduct by a government official
b : wrongful behavior (as adultery) by a spouse that leads to the dissolution of the marriage
c : an attorney's violation of the standards set for professional conduct also : an attorney's and especially a prosecutor's use of deceptive or reprehensible methods in presenting a case to a jury
d : impermissible behavior by a juror (as communicating about the case with outsiders, witnesses, or others, reading or hearing news reports about the case, or independently introducing evidence to other jurors)
e : an employee's deliberate or wanton disregard of an employer's interests or disregard or violation of the employer's standards or rules that is sufficient to justify a denial of unemployment compensation

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More from Merriam-Webster on misconduct

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for misconduct

Spanish Central: Translation of misconduct

Nglish: Translation of misconduct for Spanish Speakers

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