Thesaurus

legal

adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms of legal

1 permitted by law
  • the congressman's fund-raising efforts, though arguably unethical, were determined to be legal

Synonyms for legal

Words Related to legal

Near Antonyms for legal

Antonyms for legal

2 following or according to the rules
  • the referee declared it a legal play

Synonyms for legal

Words Related to legal

Near Antonyms for legal

Antonyms for legal

See the Dictionary Definition 

Frequently Asked Questions About legal

How is the word legal different from other adjectives like it?

Some common synonyms of legal are lawful, legitimate, and licit. While all these words mean "being in accordance with law," legal applies to what is sanctioned by law or in conformity with the law, especially as it is written or administered by the courts.

legal residents of the state

When can lawful be used instead of legal?

The meanings of lawful and legal largely overlap; however, lawful may apply to conformity with law of any sort (such as natural, divine, common, or canon).

the lawful sovereign

Where would legitimate be a reasonable alternative to legal?

In some situations, the words legitimate and legal are roughly equivalent. However, legitimate may apply to a legal right or status but also, in extended use, to a right or status supported by tradition, custom, or accepted standards.

a perfectly legitimate question about taxes

When would licit be a good substitute for legal?

The words licit and legal can be used in similar contexts, but licit applies to a strict conformity to the provisions of the law and applies especially to what is regulated by law.

the licit use of drugs by doctors

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about legal

Time Traveler for legal

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Cite this Entry

“Legal.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/legal. Accessed 16 Jun. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on legal

Dictionary: Definition of legal

Nglish: Translation of legal for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of legal for Arabic Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Name that Thing: Dog Breeds

How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

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!