Confusable words #11: claim/complain

‘Claim’ is an official word, usually used to show some legal action. For example, “I made an insurance claim after my accident,” or “The customer is claiming compensation.” It is also used to show somebody is stating a fact that is not yet verified, such as “The customer claims the goods were damaged upon delivery,” or “He claims he is only 35 years old, but he looks much older.”

‘Complain’ means to express your dissatisfaction, such as “My customer complained that the delivery was late,” but it doesn’t show any action has been taken. Another example is “The food was not tasty so I complained to the manager.”