sub·​ro·​ga·​tion | \ ˌsə-brō-ˈgā-shən How to pronounce subrogation (audio) \

Definition of subrogation

: the act of subrogating specifically : the assumption by a third party (such as a second creditor or an insurance company) of another's legal right to collect a debt or damages

Examples of subrogation in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Along with seeing utilities get out from under the burden of wildfire risk, insurers would effectively have to sign on for deep subrogation discounts on future fires. Washington Post, "The PG&E Rescue Plan Is All About Timing," 2 Apr. 2019 Indeed, the subrogation committee, without giving details, proposes a rights offering. Washington Post, "In PG&E Battle, Time Is Money and Money Is Time," 20 July 2019

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

First Known Use of subrogation

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of subrogation was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Subrogation.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for subrogation


sub·​ro·​ga·​tion | \ ˌsə-brō-ˈgā-shən How to pronounce subrogation (audio) \

Legal Definition of subrogation

1 : an equitable doctrine holding that when a third party pays a creditor or obligee the third party succeeds to the creditor's rights against the debtor or obligor also : a doctrine holding that when an insurance company pays an insured's claim of loss due to another's tort the insurer succeeds to the insured's rights (as the right to sue for damages) against the tortfeasor

called also equitable subrogation

2 : an act or instance of subrogating where an insurer has acquired by an assignment or by subrogation the right to recover for money— J. M. Landers et al.

Note: Subrogation can take place either by operation of law or by contractual agreement.

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