[ in-dem-nuh-fahy ]
/ ɪnˈdɛm nəˌfaɪ /

verb (used with object), in·dem·ni·fied, in·dem·ni·fy·ing.

to compensate for damage or loss sustained, expense incurred, etc.
to guard or secure against anticipated loss; give security against (future damage or liability).



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Origin of indemnify

1605–15; <Latin indemni(s) without loss (see indemnity) + -fy


in·dem·ni·fi·er, nounpre·in·dem·ni·fy, verb (used with object), pre·in·dem·ni·fied, pre·in·dem·ni·fy·ing.un·in·dem·ni·fied, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020


What does indemnify mean?

To indemnify is to insure someone against potential damages or loss or to compensate someone for damages or money spent.

Insurance coverage indemnifies a person by insuring them for certain potential situations, such as damages to their property from natural disasters or accidents. Indemnify is commonly used in legal contracts to secure protection against being sued or held responsible for an accident. The noun form of indemnify is indemnity, which refers to such protection and is often used in phrases like indemnity clause.

Example: The whole purpose of car insurance is to indemnify you in case you get into an accident—buying insurance after an accident happens won’t cover you.

Where does indemnify come from?

The first records of indemnify come from the 1600s. It comes from the Latin indemni(s), meaning “without loss.” This is formed from the prefix in-, which has a negating effect equivalent to un-, and demn-, from damnum, meaning “loss.”

Indemnify is most commonly used in the context of insurance and legal contracts. Insurance coverage indemnifies the policy holder, meaning it protects against financial liability for damages or loss. Damages refers to those that happen to a piece of property like a car or house, or to injuries suffered by a person. Loss refers to things like the loss of income one might experience because they can’t work. If a person is indemnified for these things, they get compensated for (at least part of) the money lost or spent.

In corporate law, an indemnity agreement can indemnify a company’s executives against personally being sued if the company is sued.

Indemnify is sometimes used in a metaphorical way to mean “to protect,” as in Your wealth will not indemnify you from disease.

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What are some other forms related to indemnify?

  • indemnity (noun)
  • indemnification (noun)
  • indemnifier (noun)
  • preindemnify (verb)
  • indemnified (past tense verb, adjective)
  • unindemnified (adjective)

What are some words that share a root or word element with indemnify


What are some words that often get used in discussing indemnify?


How is indemnify used in real life?

Indemnify is most commonly used in a technical way in the context of insurance and legal contracts, but it is sometimes used in a metaphorical way.



Try using indemnify!

Is indemnify used correctly in the following sentence? 

This coverage indemnifies you in the event of flooding.

Example sentences from the Web for indemnify

British Dictionary definitions for indemnify

/ (ɪnˈdɛmnɪˌfaɪ) /

verb -fies, -fying or -fied (tr)

to secure against future loss, damage, or liability; give security for; insure
to compensate for loss, injury, expense, etc; reimburse

Derived forms of indemnify

indemnification, nounindemnifier, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012