from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Not gained by work or service: unearned income.
  • adj. Not deserved: unearned luck.
  • adj. Not yet earned: unearned interest.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Not earned

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Not earned; not gained by labor or service.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Not earned; not merited by labor or services; not won: as, an unearned salary; unearned dividends.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. not gained by merit or labor or service


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • The proffer also details what it calls unearned real estate commissions paid by Rezko to Patti Blagojevich which was used to renovate their home.


  • Loyalty unearned is simply the husk of a notion developed to benefit the bosses in a feudal system.

    2009 July 17 « One-Minute Book Reviews

  • The accusations also include tens of thousands of dollars in unearned commissions and unnecessary retainer fees diverted to Blagojevich's wife after he and his co-conspirators learned they were being investigated.

    Details of prosecution case against Blagojevich emerge

  • Bet this gives them all a Big Chuckle as our money yet unearned is spent lickety Split!

    Clinton edges out Palin in 'Most Admired' poll

  • Suppose further that I have a family income from wages of, say, $250,000 and that I make around a million dollars a year in unearned income including stock dividends, capital gains on stocks, and other sources that are not wages I work for.

    Sound Politics: Has anybody vouched for Darcy Burner?

  • WILLIS: Well, ok, what many people don't realize is that when a lender takes a home through foreclosure, even what's called a short sale, if the lender doesn't sell that house for as much as its worth, the consumer, the homeowner can actually be liable for taxes on the amount of what they call unearned income that happens when the sale occurs.

    CNN Transcript Aug 23, 2007

  • "Sentimentality is often called the unearned emotion and intrusive carnivals of public mourning unsettle me," he said.

    All - Digital Spy - Entertainment and Media News

  • If I say "I think my taxes are too low" because that million a year in unearned income makes me the beneficiary of big tax cuts at the expense of people who don't have that kind of resources available, what does that have to do with your taxes, or with the taxes of a typical family earning $60,000 to $75,000 a year without big stock holdings generating capital gains and without big savings generating interest and dividends, etc?

    Sound Politics: Has anybody vouched for Darcy Burner?

  • Let’s look a bit more closely at the scandulous ‘business’ of Bernie Madoff, confidence games, Ponzi schemes and other financial vehicles for funneling, accumulating and concentrating billions of dollars in unearned wealth into the hands of a tiny minority of people who comprise the top of the global economy.

    Your New Year’s Green Year Resolution

  • I was really disappointed when the president never challenged the fact that so-called "unearned income," is taxed at the capital gains rate of 15 percent.

    Ed Koch: If There Ever Was a Moment When a Third Party Would Have a Chance to Win, This Is It


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.