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[en-tahy-tl-muh nt] /ɛnˈtaɪ tl mənt/

the act of .
the state of being .
the right to guaranteed benefits under a government program, as Social Security or unemployment compensation.

1823, perhaps in some senses from French entitlement, which long had been used in legal language; in part a native formation from entitle + -ment. Entitlement culture attested by 1994 (culture of entitlement is from 1989).

Federal programs, such as Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, that disburse money according to fixed formulas to citizens who fall into designated categories. Because entitlements do not require annual congressional appropriations, their cost tends to rise steadily and, in the view of some, out of control.


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