Benefitted vs. Benefited: When to use each word

Which side of the pond are you writing for?

Are you finding yourself stumped about using the word benefitted or benefited? Spelling rules can be confusing, mainly because so many words look similar but mean entirely different things.

This short article will clear up any lingering confusion you may have.

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The difference between benefitted and benefited is in the spelling. Benefitted (with 2 t's) is a British spelling, and benefited (with only 1 t) is American.

What's the definition of benefitted?

The word benefitted is the past tense of the verb benefit. The latter word in the context of the verb to benefit means to receive advantage or good from. Therefore, in the past tense, it would refer to someone who has received a positive like profits, improvements, or gifts so to speak.

We can outline some usage examples below:

  • John benefitted from Joseph's loyalty.
  • Those who received company bonuses benefitted from the extra cash.
  • The dog benefitted from the food that fell on the floor.

What's the definition of benefited?

The definition of benefited is the same as in the description above. However, benefited is an alternative spelling of the word benefitted, widely used in British English.

Examples include:

  • George has not benefited from any extra classes.
  • I have never benefited from working time at home.
  • The kids benefited from some time outside.

Are there any exceptions to the rule?

There are no exceptional uses of the two words. Benefitted and benefited are the same word with a mutually accepted definition and no differences in context.

The only noted difference is that the word benefitted is used almost exclusively in British English, where benefited is used exclusively across the pond, if you will, in American English.

It's worth remembering that if you are writing academic, business, or any official documents, adjust your style and spelling in accordance with the audience you are writing for.

  • If you write documents or messages where British English is the standard, use benefitted.
  • If you write in regions where American English is official or preferred, use benefited.

There's a little trick to remembering both spellings, depending on what standard of English you're writing.

A simple rule to remember when to use each word

The differences between benefited and benefitted are relatively straightforward, so there is a simple trick to remember each use.

  • British citizens love their tea, so add an extra one t: benefitted.
  • Americans aren't big tea drinkers, so we only need one t: benefited.

Hopefully, this short guide will help you keep these words straight in the future! If you're ever in doubt, using a tool like Grammarly or spell check in Word can act as a second set of eyes to make sure every word is spelled exactly as it needs to be.

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