'Judgment' vs 'Judgement': What's the Difference?

By Amy Gilmore, updated on July 9, 2023

Are you looking for an explanation of the difference between 'judgment' vs. 'judgement?'

Here is the short answer: 

  • 'Judgment' is always the grammatically correct spelling in legal documents and in U.S.-style English. 
  • 'Judgement' is the correct way to spell the term in U.K.-style English. 
  • Both terms are variations of the same noun, which means the process of forming an idea or opinion about something. 

There is more to learn about these words, including why there are two spellings and when to use them. So, it would be a good idea to read this entire post with definitions, examples, and pronunciations so you have a comprehensive understanding of both.

What is the Difference Between 'Judgment' vs. 'Judgement?'

'Judgment' and 'judgement' are spelling variants of the same word. The former is the U.S. English version, and the second is the British English spelling.

The correct spelling depends on the audience you are writing for or the type of document you are writing.

When to Use 'Judgment' vs. 'Judgment'

You know that both terms have the same meanings. So, how do you know when to use each spelling?

So, let's look at when to use each:

  • Use 'judgment' when writing for an audience in the United States.

For example, you would use 'judgment' like this:

When she first moved to New York, her judgment was that everyone who lived in a big city was arrogant and inconsiderate. 

  • Use 'judgment' in all legal documents and communications, regardless of whether a United States or U.K. court has jurisdiction.

For example, you might read a legal document that says:

This judgment is entered into on the 5th day of July 2023. 

  • Use 'judgment' if you are referring to a legal document.

For example, if you were writing a summary of a legal case, you might say:

The injured parties finally received a judgment against the company responsible for the accident. 

  • Use 'judgement' when writing to a British English-speaking audience in a non-legal capacity.

As an example, if you were writing an article for a U.K. dating safety site, you might say something like this:

When you start dating someone from an app, meet in a public place to get to know them. Always be cautious and use your best judgement. If something feels off, leave. 

Definition of 'Judgment': What Does 'Judgment' Mean?

According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, 'judgment' is a noun defined as:

  • The process by which someone establishes a viewpoint of someone or something

It can also mean:

  • An opinion formed about someone with little or no facts
  • A legally binding decision handed down by a judge or jury
  • A religious term for the final decision by God as to whether or not a human being living a life worthy of admittance to Heaven

Definition of 'Judgement': What Does 'Judgement' Mean?

As I mentioned previously, both spelling variations have the same meaning. Many dictionaries list 'judgement' as a variant of 'judgment' and refer you to the latter's definition.

So, despite which spelling you use, the definition is still:

  • A noun that means the process by which someone develops an idea or opinion about something

Pronunciation: How to You Pronounce 'Judgment' vs. 'Judgement'

Learning how to pronounce words is beneficial, whether you are brushing up on your grammar and writing skills or learning English as a second language. Knowing how to pronounce words correctly gives you more confidence to use them, which helps you become a better writer or communicator.

So, here is a pronunciation guide you can follow.

  • Use this phonetic spelling to pronounce 'judgment':


  • Use this phonetic spelling to pronounce 'judgement';


Sample Sentences Using 'Judgment' vs. 'Judgement'

Now that you know the definitions, meanings, and usages of 'judgment' vs. 'judgement' read these sample sentences. They will help you learn different ways to use each spelling accurately.


  • Once the judge issues a final judgment in the case, you must abide by it unless you return to court and request a modification.
  • Failing to adhere to a judgment can have legal consequences. So, it is essential to understand the judge's ruling.
  • I can't believe they already broke up. My initial judgment was that they were like two peas in a pod.
  • After receiving the judgment, the plaintiffs went out for a celebratory lunch.
  • Before you pass judgment on him, remember it takes two to tango.
  • I am checking in to see if the judge has issued a final judgment in the case.


  • After all the judgement the girl received for wearing the hot pink coloured pants to school, she significantly toned down her wardrobe.
  • It was easy to see who the teacher's favourite students were based on her harsh judgement of the other students in the class.
  • Will you ask her what happened with the project? I do not want to pass judgement on her performance without having all of the facts.
  • Her judgement of the risk was determined long before she attended the presentation. So, nothing you could have said would have changed her mind.
  • You should not pass judgement on other people without knowing their background or life experiences.

A Last Look at the Difference Between 'Judgment' vs. 'Judgement'

Before you go, let's review what you learned: 

  • 'Judgment' is the correct spelling when writing legal documents or addressing an American audience. 
  • 'Judgement' is the correct spelling for writing none legal communications to a British English-speaking audience. 
  • The terms are variants of 'judgment,' the noun for forming a viewpoint, decision, or opinion. 

A simple trick to remembering the difference between 'judgment' vs. 'judgement' is recognizing that the U.K.-style spellings of words often include an additional vowel, like favourite, 'judgement,' and 'colour.' Nevertheless, if you get mixed up in the future, you can always return for a quick review of this lesson.

You can also learn a lot from our site's other confusing word guides. Each contains a brief and detailed explanation, definitions, pronunciations, usage tips, and examples. So, they are an excellent way to improve your writing skills or gain confidence in your knowledge of the English language.

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Written By:
Amy Gilmore
Amy Gilmore is one of the lead freelance writers for WritingTips.org. She has been a professional writer and editor for the past eight years. She developed a love of language arts and literature in school and decided to become a professional freelance writer after a demanding career in real estate. Amy is constantly learning to become a better writer and loves sharing tips with other writers who want to do the same.

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