Definition of claim in English:



  • 1[reporting verb] State or assert that something is the case, typically without providing evidence or proof.

    [with clause] ‘the Prime Minister claimed that he was concerned about Third World debt’
    [with direct speech] ‘‘I'm entitled to be conceited,’ he claimed’
    [with object] ‘not every employee is eligible to claim unfair dismissal’
    • ‘In Central Tibet dialect, a language unknown to the district he lived in, the child demanded the rosary, claiming it belonged to him.’
    • ‘They also claimed that moves to protect her new identity were useless as she was so instantly recognisable.’
    • ‘The plaintiff claimed that there is evidence to show what her current needs are.’
    • ‘The prosecution claims they attacked him on December 30 when he tried to stop them stealing the Toyota.’
    • ‘Supporters claimed privatisation would bring an end to underfunding.’
    • ‘The developers and some anthropologists claimed that the evidence on which protection had been granted was fabricated.’
    • ‘Mrs May claimed that evidence from the blonde-haired victim, who had had a baby since her ordeal, was unreliable.’
    • ‘One protestor claimed that the company was recruiting contractors to replace the permanent workforce.’
    • ‘How many times has Ian claimed that he's moved past their time together?’
    • ‘They claim the cost to victims of accidents with uninsured drivers is £500 million each year.’
    • ‘She also claimed that the profession does not attract enough new recruits for financial reasons, painting a worrying picture for the future of nursing.’
    • ‘Mitsuki looked back at Akira and scowled at her for claiming such a ridiculous notion.’
    • ‘The professor claimed that he should not have to appear before the commission on grounds of his age and ill health.’
    • ‘Hospital representatives have claimed that the shutdowns are temporary and have attempted to minimise their impact.’
    • ‘At the same time, he claimed that professionally qualified caterers were on hand to monitor and inspect the cooking.’
    • ‘It has been claimed the chartered jet cost £75,000 to take her back to west Africa last Thursday afternoon.’
    • ‘They also claimed that additional information, other than the video evidence, had come to their attention.’
    • ‘The government claims this would potentially cost hundreds of millions of dollars it cannot afford.’
    • ‘Mr Wallace claimed that the move would have a huge impact on local companies and could result in job losses.’
    • ‘The new rules, if passed, will also cut down the cost of processing asylum requests, claims the right-wing party.’
    assert, declare, profess, maintain, state, hold, affirm, avow, aver, protest, insist, swear, attest
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    1. 1.1[with object]Assert that one has gained or achieved (something)
      ‘his supporters claimed victory in the presidential elections’
      • ‘The UK government is claiming some kind of victory out of a Common Fisheries Policy negotiations which everyone, in the cold light of dawn, admits is the management of extinction by committee.’
      • ‘His supporters claimed a significant reduction in agrarian crime.’
      • ‘Artists began to claim the right to suggest their own subject matter, unshackled by scholars or patrons.’
      • ‘Frankness demands that any scientist claiming an advance in knowledge must set bounds on that claim by pointing out remaining uncertainties and areas of ignorance.’
      • ‘The bitterest military conflict in late twentieth-century Latin American history came to an end with all sides claiming a measure of victory.’
      • ‘His supporters have now claimed victory.’
      • ‘Both opponents and supporters of affirmative action claimed victory in the days following the ruling.’
      • ‘It set out do something, only to achieve nothing and then claim a victory.’
      • ‘His supporters, having claimed victory, were celebrating in the streets Thursday night.’
  • 2[with object] Formally request or demand; say that one owns or has earned (something)

    ‘if no one claims the items, they will become Crown property’
    • ‘The allegations against him go further, suggesting he is claiming money from the fees office to pay the costs of care for his disabled sister.’
    • ‘What happens to those who have rights but who cannot articulate them, or assert them, or claim them?’
    • ‘They would compete against each other in its discovery, to gain knowledge and claim new territory.’
    • ‘If your income is less than these amounts and you have savings that earn interest, then you can claim tax back.’
    • ‘Some householders then claim compensation from the council, and the council demands the builder repays that compensation.’
    • ‘She remained the moving spirit behind the scenes for a long time after she stopped claiming any formal roles or titles.’
    • ‘Those employed in domestic service will be able to claim the amount they earn as a tax deduction.’
    • ‘Instead of claiming the offered prize money, he instead decides to share his work with other research scientists.’
    • ‘Of course there are allegations of people getting compensation, then coming back and claiming money again.’
    • ‘Less than half of home-owning pensioners are claiming the money they should get.’
    • ‘The laws apply to anyone who claims asylum once in Britain, instead of at a port of entry.’
    • ‘As he picked the baby up to take him home, seeing that was the only thing to do for there was no one claiming him, he noticed a book opened beside it.’
    • ‘Remember, all prize money must be claimed not later than the 5th of March, 2005.’
    • ‘Self-employed people who work from home could be missing out on significant tax savings by not claiming their full expenses entitlement.’
    • ‘This has led some to believe that it is essential to gain entry before claiming asylum.’
    • ‘If he does, tradition demands that he can claim a seat on the Treasury bench.’
    • ‘The couple were dismayed about waiting so long, and later barged into the hospital with supporters to claim the baby.’
    • ‘She had claimed Income Support as a single person and had failed to declare her work.’
    • ‘No extra money over and above these costs can be claimed.’
    • ‘Half of the UK's pensioners will be able to claim Pension Credit from October.’
    lay claim to, say that one owns, assert ownership of, formally request
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    1. 2.1[with object]Make a demand for (money) under the terms of an insurance policy.
      [no object] ‘the premiums are reduced by fifty per cent if you don't claim on the policy’
      • ‘What are you entitled to claim on your house insurance?’
      • ‘I could claim on the house insurance but would still have to find the first £50.’
      • ‘She was also accused of faking three burglaries to claim insurance money.’
      • ‘Still, it's lucky it's a proper illness as you'd be less likely to claim on your tour insurance for a stage-fright cancellation.’
      • ‘If it ever breaks down, call your local computer geek, or set fire to it and claim the insurance money!’
      • ‘Owners reported lost phones stolen to claim on insurance, pushing reported crime through the roof.’
      • ‘Henry is told to claim on his travel insurance, which has a £50 excess charge.’
      • ‘Anyone whose claim is not honoured by their carrier is also likely to find it difficult to claim on their travel insurance.’
      • ‘He tries to claim on the insurance but is told he is entitled to nothing, the insurance company declare it an ‘act of God’.’
      • ‘Sometimes punters who have lost their phone falsely report it as stolen in order to claim on insurance.’
      • ‘Days passed and Tom then asked Harry to claim on the insurance.’
      • ‘At the moment they roughly share the cost of producing the funding for people who claim accident compensation.’
      • ‘What a tragedy it would be to be burgled and not have time to claim on your insurance policy.’
      • ‘The passenger door, rear door and passenger side rear long window were all damaged so I had to claim on my insurance to pay for the damage.’
      • ‘How does adding an inexperienced driver make it less likely that we'll need to claim on the insurance?’
      • ‘My brother spent the weekend agonising over whether to claim on his insurance.’
      • ‘These must be claimed against household insurance.’
      • ‘We can't claim on insurance because it's a flat roof, which doesn't get covered.’
      • ‘You can still claim on your travel insurance, but then the insurer will recoup the cost from the airline.’
      • ‘Mobile phone users have been told to report their phone stolen to make it easier to claim on their insurance.’
      request, ask for, apply for, put in for, put in an application for
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    2. 2.2Call for (someone's notice and thought)
      ‘a most unwelcome event claimed his attention’
      • ‘Then Jonas seemed to shake himself out of whatever thoughts had claimed him.’
  • 3Cause the loss of (someone's life)

    ‘the attacks claimed the lives of five people’
    • ‘The wounds that nearly claimed his life asserted their presence by a few sharp throbs as he moved.’
    • ‘He has not been charged with involvement in the attack, which claimed 202 lives.’
    • ‘However, sporadic attacks are still happening, claiming some lives and fueling fears of further violence among residents.’
    • ‘The attacks claimed 202 lives and alerted Southeast Asian leaders to the threat that terrorism posed to their region.’
    • ‘He is believed to have planned two of the attacks, which claimed the lives of 31 people.’
    • ‘She was subjected to a sustained knife attack which almost claimed her life when she stopped her car and went to help another woman who was being attacked.’
    • ‘A number of band members were killed in the US attack, which also claimed the life of the cameraman.’
    • ‘These waters are known as the graveyard of the Pacific, earning this reputation for claiming hundreds of lives and vessels during the last century.’
    • ‘The attack claimed the lives of 241 Marines.’
    • ‘Chloe lived with asthma for more than two years until a severe attack claimed her life.’
    • ‘Victory riots have claimed the lives of two college students in Massachusetts alone this year.’
    • ‘Several thousand army and navy Special Attack Forces were used, claiming the lives of about 7,000 pilots, many of them no older than 18 or 19.’
    • ‘So far this month there have been more than 40 suicide attacks, which have claimed 269 lives and wounded 558.’
    • ‘No terrorist attack in history had claimed so many lives.’
    • ‘The sabotage attack claimed over 100 lives and left hundreds more wounded.’
    • ‘The findings are the result of a three-year study into the terrorist attack that claimed the lives of 2,749 people.’
    • ‘Insurgent attacks claimed 1,233 lives, and wounded 4,115 people, during the same period.’
    • ‘A man is accused of taking part in a vicious attack which claimed the life of a former church organist.’
    • ‘A massive car bomb attack has claimed the life of another prominent critic of Syria.’
    • ‘That was the night Japanese submarines attacked Sydney, sinking the accommodation ferry Kuttabul and claiming the lives of 21 sailors.’


  • 1An assertion that something is true.

    [with clause] ‘he was dogged by the claim that he had CIA links’
    • ‘Furthermore, the claim that the similarities were a result of photographic memory is a claim Kelly herself has never made.’
    • ‘We should also be countering the claim that the monies teachers receive will lead to the impoverishment of city residents.’
    • ‘The claim that the visa regulations are being introduced is not true to fact.’
    • ‘The claim that this was an ‘extraordinary’ boom is belied by the Government's own figures.’
    • ‘Their claim that the sector employs 91,000 people directly is a credible and much-needed revision.’
    • ‘Do you think there is any substance, then, to his claim that his own warnings went ignored?’
    • ‘Objections include the claim that a house so close to the graveyard would intrude on burials and the privacy of people visiting graves.’
    • ‘Albee disagrees with the frequent claim that audiences today are less tolerant of challenging drama.’
    • ‘Objections are met with the claim that we need cotton for our clothes, when the truth is that almost all our cotton crop is exported.’
    • ‘She questions my claim that people soon wake up to this and are not deceived by it.’
    • ‘Professor Keep also challenges the claim that more than three-quarters of new jobs will be for graduates.’
    • ‘The claim that the protestors offer no alternative to globalization is as false as the other claims.’
    • ‘But critics say the claim that the 87,000 who've left are doing well rests on shaky evidence.’
    • ‘His is a startling claim that is inconsistent with the repeated declarations of U.S. statesmen.’
    • ‘Parents of pupils at a York primary school have challenged the council claim that their children will receive an improved service if it closes.’
    • ‘Police never bothered to question his claim that he had used the apartment for drug activities.’
    • ‘The claim that professors at the leading law schools tilt to the left is supported by statistics.’
    • ‘The claim that he couldn't act might have been true a couple of years ago but it most definitely is quite untrue and quite out-of-date now.’
    • ‘Thus, the claim that the card offers some kind of advantage to consumers is dangerously close to lying.’
    • ‘He has ridiculed the claim that militants are responsible for the disappearances.’
    assertion, declaration, profession, affirmation, avowal, averment, protestation, representation
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    1. 1.1A statement of the novel features in a patent.
      ‘the two patents based on his claims will be reconfirmed’
      • ‘The license is also revoked if the licensee makes a patent claim against another licensee over the code covered by the license.’
      • ‘The move has spurred anger among vendors hit by patent infringement claims; they say they will contest the action vigorously.’
      • ‘I have also underlined those features of the claim which are relied on for the allegation of infringement.’
      • ‘The claims in the patent in suit refer to crystallisation on an ‘industrial scale’.’
      • ‘The online music service that it is now suing is targeted at home users and it may well be beyond its patent claim.’
      • ‘Claims 14 and onwards are substantially the same as the claims in the other patent.’
      • ‘The patent claim was filed in 1986 but Compression Labs never pursued royalties.’
      • ‘A non-profit group requested that Microsoft's claims for the patents be investigated.’
      • ‘There is hardly room, on the evidence, for a finding that there is, in the claims of the patent, a scintilla of invention.’
      • ‘The specification continues with a commentary upon the characterizing feature of the claim.’
      • ‘Yes, and that might provide a defence to the patent claim but not a defence to this action for breach of contract.’
      • ‘Further, there is no reference to any such exercise being relevant to the teaching or claims of the 605 patent itself.’
      • ‘Thirdly, a summary of the relevant parts of the description and claims in the Patent.’
      • ‘The only issue in the proceedings is the proper interpretation of this phrase as it is used in the claims of the Patent.’
      • ‘This does not mean, however, that a simple allegation of a novel claim may pass judicial scrutiny.’
      • ‘This will not be the end of uncomfortable and incorrect patent claims but this is certainly one that can be squashed and so hopefully will be.’
      • ‘The form of the claims of the patent, as allowed by the Technical Board of Appeal, was known but the final form of the specification was not.’
      • ‘Like so many patent violation claims, we reckon this one too will be settled out of court.’
      • ‘The patents in suit protect the plaintiffs from infringement of the claims of those patents.’
      • ‘That is, that it is to be operated in a manner which would not fall within any of the claims of the Patent.’
  • 2A demand or request for something considered one's due.

    ‘the court had denied their claims to asylum’
    • ‘Courts almost never overturn presidential claims to privilege in civil suits, he says.’
    • ‘Tullow will not put too much store in this victory, but will rather wait for a stiffer examination of their claims to the town's silver.’
    • ‘The flag of Canada, were a real energy and price crisis to develop in America, would hardly hamper their claims to our resources.’
    • ‘After the Portuguese, it was the Germans, the British and the French who laid claims to some part of the country.’
    • ‘Protests against the city's claim to the land were vigorous and lengthy.’
    • ‘So far the Egyptian courts have consistently upheld Rotondi's claims to Club Red.’
    request, application
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    1. 2.1An application for compensation under the terms of an insurance policy.
      ‘he should make a claim on his house insurance for storm damage’
      • ‘If booked as a package through a travel agent, they should make a claim on their travel insurance.’
      • ‘I placed a claim with the British insurance company thinking there would be no problem.’
      • ‘If you think you do have a case, you should act on any shortfall before you file a claim for compensation.’
      • ‘Two weeks ago, claims for unemployment insurance hit a five-year high of 392,000.’
      • ‘He believes people working in the claims and brokerage areas of the insurance sector are still being offered company cars.’
      • ‘Death and disability claims on insurance policies are being subjected to more intense scrutiny than was the case ten years ago.’
      • ‘By proving that your claim is legitimate you make it easy for your insurer to settle your claim quickly and to your satisfaction.’
      • ‘During that period, the AIG unit paid the money back in the form of insurance claims.’
      • ‘The insurance industry has argued that legal costs add about 40 per cent to the cost of insurance claims.’
      • ‘Fewer claims usually translates into substantially lower costs of claims incurred by insurers.’
      • ‘They expect this to be a more serious deterrent to driving offences and thus reduce accidents and insurance claims.’
      • ‘The criminals often return once the insurance claim has been paid out and stolen goods have been replaced.’
      • ‘December's ruling will probably mean that insurers are less exposed to compensation claims.’
      • ‘In your particular case the airline is within its rights to reject your compensation claim.’
      • ‘Houston, in particular, is above the national average in uninsured claims, Snow says.’
      • ‘It is now up to individual policy holders to pursue their own compensation claims.’
      • ‘For example, there are three kinds of compensation for insurance claims.’
      • ‘In case you are worrying how you might file a claim once a piece of space debris has flattened you, it is worth knowing that this insurance is a joke.’
      • ‘If the warning is strong enough, your insurance policy should pay out on a cancellation claim.’
      • ‘In the longer term, there is a reduction in the number of insurance claims and related costs if one has a robust system in place.’
    2. 2.2A right or title to something.
      ‘they have first claim on the assets of the trust’
      • ‘Ideology and history are back with a vengeance in support of claims over land and lives of other peoples.’
      • ‘She believes that his family could make a claim on the house as they are his next of kin.’
      • ‘The claims are limited to land that was seized from its owners after the passing of the 1913 Land Act.’
      • ‘This Parliament has a responsibility to consider that there are others who have a claim to the land.’
      • ‘As long as we are there at least we have a claim to our ancestral lands.’
      • ‘She was on a committee formed to liaise with ex-Sophiatown residents regarding land claims.’
      • ‘Didiza said the remaining claims largely involved agricultural land.’
      • ‘If more than one person seemed to have a claim on a piece of land, it quickly got mired in the courts.’
      • ‘Because the city is the first creditor, they have the first claim on the property.’
      • ‘After the defeat of Japan in 1945, the Allied powers rescinded Japanese claims to the islands.’
      • ‘Hard-liners say settlements and outposts reinforce their claim to Biblical lands.’
      • ‘They do not have the same historical claim to this land as we do.’
      • ‘A Maori claim over the land was ignored.’
      • ‘The much-discussed draft makes official provision for land seizures, so as to speed up the settlement of land claims.’
      • ‘Such a child might use the courts, for example, to establish a claim on inheritance or support.’
      • ‘The Baroness had agreed in a marriage settlement to renounce her claim on the trust.’
      • ‘If you've got a claim over some land where a mining company wants to go, all of a sudden the mining company's going to be knocking on your door.’
      • ‘A claim to the land could not be maintained simply by those who dwelled upon it and the bones resting under it also had a living role to play.’
      • ‘China has strong historical claims to bits of the Russian Far East on the Russian side of the Amur River.’
      • ‘No one interested in native land claims can do without this book.’
      entitlement to, title to, right to, rights to
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    3. 2.3A piece of land allotted to or taken by someone in order to be mined.
      ‘each of them was to be rewarded with a farm and a number of mining claims in the land’
      • ‘JK explained about the ancient mining law allowing homes built on mining claims.’
      • ‘In Quebec, for example, mining claims are staked using maps on the Internet, a system Teed favors.’
      • ‘Mining claims were staked but were illegal because the territory belonged to the Indians.’
      • ‘As a result Chinese were driven off gold mining claims by white miners who had no fear of being arrested.’
      • ‘The mining claims or other mining related interest may be affected by the action.’
      • ‘The area no longer has any active mines, but there are large tracts of land under claim for placer mining.’


  • claim to fame

    • A reason for being regarded as unusual or noteworthy.

      ‘the town's only claim to fame is that it is the birthplace of Elgar’
      • ‘Founded in 1887, this North Texas city about the size of York doesn't have many claims to fame.’
      • ‘Seven years later, he was in charge of the Dunblane branch, and it is one of his claims to fame that, at 23, he was the youngest bank manager in Scotland.’
      • ‘One of the claims to fame at Royal St George's is that it was recast as Royal St Mark's by Ian Fleming, and used as the setting for James Bond's epic match in Goldfinger.’
      • ‘Among its claims to fame, Soweto includes the one street in the world that can boast the former homes of two Nobel Peace Prize winners.’
      • ‘She sang in the madrigal, one of our school's few claims to fame.’
      • ‘Chrysorrogiatissa has two claims to fame: the icon of the Virgin, in its massive silver-gilt frame, is reputed to offer succour to criminals; and its vineyards produce one of the best Cypriot wines.’
      • ‘Among the many claims to fame of Dundee and its environs is that it inspired Mary Shelley's 'Frankenstein'.’
      • ‘Renowned for its wide main street, this average-sized rural town in the heart of mid-Ulster has few particular claims to fame, as its web site freely admits.’
      • ‘For years the former mill town has been in the shadow of its more illustrious neighbours Leeds and Manchester with little or no claim to fame.’
      • ‘Tuskegee has another claim to fame - it is the birthplace of the late Rosa Parks.’
      forte, strong point, strength, métier, long suit, strong suit, talent, skill, bent, gift, claim to fame, department, pièce de résistance
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Phrasal Verbs

  • claim something back

    • Ask for money that one has paid to be returned in accordance with the law or one's rights.

      ‘you may be able to claim something back from the taxman’
      • ‘You are entitled to claim back all amounts above € 125 spent.’
      • ‘Hedge funds are taking advantage of human rights legislation in a bid to claim money back from the Government.’
      • ‘Some major hospitals are now claiming back more than £ 500,000 a year from insurance companies.’
      • ‘In the US, pensions are normally taxed, with the pensioner having to claim back the tax at year end.’
      • ‘Parents eligible for the Government's families tax credit can claim back 70 per cent of the £ 20 daily cost.’
      • ‘UK charities are now entitled to claim tax back on donations made by UK taxpayers, a scheme called Gift Aid.’
      • ‘The Ramblers Association can only claim tax back at the standard rate.’
      • ‘He is now looking at halving depreciation rates on rental property investments - the amount they can claim back.’
      • ‘However, the Government wants to stop 2.8 million people claiming back 40p for every £ 1 invested, according to the Sunday Telegraph.’
      • ‘At the centre of the challenge is a cap on the amount acquitted defendants can claim back.’


Middle English: from Old French claime (noun), clamer (verb), from Latin clamare call out.