Have you noticed the spellings \u201cdependent\u201d and \u201cdependant\u201d used anywhere? This might seem odd if you\u2019re from the USA, as American English always uses the spelling \u201cdependent.\u201d But things get more complicated once you\u2019re outside the United States! To help you avoid errors in your work, then, here is our guide to the difference between \u201cdependent\u201d and \u201cdependant.\u201d\r\nDependent in American English\r\nIn American English, the word \u201cdependent\u201d has two key meanings:\r\n\r\n\tAs a noun meaning \u201ca person who depends on someone else for support,\u201d such as a child or elderly person who cannot take care of themselves.\r\n\tAs an adjective meaning \u201creliant upon\u201d or \u201cdetermined by.\u201d\r\n\r\nSo, to put it another way, a dependent (noun) is dependent (adjective) upon other people. Using the same spelling for both terms makes it easy to remember, especially since \u201ce\u201d is the only vowel!\r\nBut other English dialects, like British, Canadian, and Australian English, distinguish between the two uses with two spellings: dependent and dependant. Read on to find out how this works!\r\nDependant (Noun: A Person Requiring Support)\r\nIn British English, Canadian English, and Australian English, \u201cdependant\u201d is the noun form of this word. It therefore refers to a person who depends on someone else for support. For example:\r\nSome people are responsible for multiple dependants.\r\nIn US English, though, we would use \u201cdependent\u201d in this context instead.\r\nDependent (Adjective: Reliant Upon)\r\nOutside the USA, \u201cdependent\u201d is an adjective meaning \u201creliant upon.\u201d This can be to rely on someone or something for support, such as financial support:\r\nI\u2019m dependent upon my family for rent money.\r\nOr it can indicate an addiction, such as an alcohol or drug dependency:\r\nHe has been dependent on alcohol for three years.\r\nAlternatively, \u201cdependent\u201d can also mean \u201cdetermined by,\u201d indicating a cause and effect relationship. We can therefore use it to describe something being contingent on something else. For instance:\r\nThe accuracy of the experiment is dependent on the equipment used.\r\nThese are all the same in US English, so this should be easy to remember!\r\nSummary: Dependent or Dependant?\r\nIf you\u2019re using American English, there\u2019s no problem here: simply use \u201cdependent\u201d as a noun and an adjective and get on with your day!\r\nBut in other English dialects, there is an important distinction:\r\n\r\n\tDependent is an adjective meaning \u201creliant upon\u201d or \u201cdetermined by.\u201d\r\n\tDependant is a noun meaning \u201ca person who depends on someone else for support,\u201d such as a child or elderly person.\r\n\r\nRemember, though, that \u201cdependant\u201d is not usually used in American English. You will only need this spelling if writing for an audience outside the US, such as in the UK or Australia. And if you want to make sure your writing is always correct for your audience, why not have it proofread by the experts? Simply select the dialect required when you upload you document.