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[skawf-law, skof-] /ˈskɔfˌlɔ, ˈskɒf-/
a person who flouts the law, especially one who fails to pay fines owed.
a person who flouts rules, conventions, or accepted practices.
Origin of scofflaw
1920-25; scoff1 + law1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for scofflaw


(US, informal) a person who habitually flouts or violates the law, esp one who fails to pay debts or answer summonses
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
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Word Origin and History for scofflaw

1924, from scoff (v.) + law (n.). The winning entry in a national contest during Prohibition to coin a word to characterize a person who drinks illegally, chosen from more than 25,000 entries; the $200 winning prize was split between two contestants who sent in the word separately: Henry Irving Dale and Miss Kate L. Butler. Other similar attempts did not stick, cf. pitilacker (1926), winning entry in a contest by the Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals to establish a scolding word for one who mistreats animals (submitted by Mrs. M. McIlvaine Bready of Mickleton, N.J.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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